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The governments of the world have come together and decided to attack the small island nation after many failed attempts at stealing their technology. defenses Bombing or invading the land is pretty much impossible they have metal storm guns set up everywhere on the island to stop nukes and other missiles or paratroopers. Railguns and predator drones are set up to deal with any hostile ships. Undersea mini-drones armed with torpedoes are set up to deal with any submarines or any undersea threats. Biological attacks are pointless the small island nation health care that is a cut above any other country. Treatment and cures for pretty much all diseases that could affect the country have been developed and revenge would come quickly and savagely to whichever country did it. Whether a fusion bomb going off in a random city in that country or drone strikes hitting governments all around the globe. Merely using an e.m.p on the island wouldn't work because all technology on the island is e.m.p shielded. Cyber attacks don't work the technology that the small island nation uses isn't compatible with anything a different country uses and if you could make your technology compatible with theirs have fun getting passed a true AI running on a quantum computer not to mention their computer system is air-gapped.

if it helps to sum it up I am asking can we siege the unsiegeable.

please ask for information if needed

Edit they are trying to steal the technology from the small island nation

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    $\begingroup$ This does not seem to be describing a siege. This seems to be describing modern attacks and corresponding defenses. A siege of an island would be more along the lines of a blockade. $\endgroup$
    – user535733
    May 4, 2020 at 3:31
  • $\begingroup$ Before the "how" can be answered, what is the objective of the attackers and what is the reason behind it? Are they trying to annihilate the island's life down to the last microbe? Are they trying to overcome the defences in order to snatch tech samples? What are the time constraints - are there hours or years to achieve the objective? $\endgroup$ May 4, 2020 at 4:44
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    $\begingroup$ In accordance with this Meta discussion, I am voting to close this question as inappropriate for this site. $\endgroup$
    – Frostfyre
    May 4, 2020 at 13:20

9 Answers 9


Starve them of natural resources.

A small island is never going to have access to the rare earth elements needed to build and maintain high tech equipment, let alone resources like lead, lithium, cobalt, crude oil for polymers etc.

Even if your nation is 50 years ahead of everyone else, they are still going to be reliant on them just as every other developed nation is- likely even more so.

All you need to do is have the rest of the world sanction the island nation and prevent any resources being traded with them. With no capability to build and repair new equipment, the island nations technological advantage is going to wane enough over time that a conventional war becomes feasible.

On top of that, you could drop large amounts of sea mines and let the tides carry them to island. Flooding the area around them with small, hard to detect unexploded ordinance would create massive headaches for any off shore operations they might be thinking of.

You could also deliberately pollute the water around the island. Causing a massive oil spill upstream is going to damage any sensitive equipment that comes in to contact with it and contaminate any resources they try to mine underwater. Similarly, releasing radioactive particulates upwind of them is going to make life a misery for anyone on the island, even if they do have good access to medical care.

Basically, do any and every petty thing to make their life difficult.

  • $\begingroup$ This island nation has mastered undersea mining and most resources can be found on the sea floor so starving them of natural resources wouldn't work that well. $\endgroup$ May 4, 2020 at 19:22
  • $\begingroup$ @Zeronineseven I think the odds of all the needed resources for a high tech society being located in large enough quantities in a small geographic area is unlikely. But if you're saying its 100% self sufficient and completely impenetrable it sounds like you've made that faction in your world too overpowered, so you're never going to get a satisfactory answer. If you actually want there to be some sense of conflict, you're probably better off making the technology gap between them closer or giving the island nation some weakness, like a dependence on foreign resources. $\endgroup$
    – Jack
    May 4, 2020 at 19:54

Drop things on their heads

There's a rule which pretty much boils down to "If you can't solve a problem with X, that just means you aren't using enough X. If you can't solve a problem with duct tape, you aren't using enough duct tape. If you can't light something on fire, your fire isn't hot enough. And, if you can't destroy a country by chucking rocks at it, then just chuck faster and bigger rocks.

By which dropping rocks from space on them. Not really rocks per se either, I'm thinking more of Project Thor type orbital bombardment, except you scale it up a few times. Sure, they aren't the most accurate of weapons, but quantity has a quality of its own, as they say, or in other words, just keeping dropping the rocks on their heads.

These are almost impossible to detect. The rod that you're dropping into the country has a minute profile, not to mention that the launch occurs in space so that can't be detected. Doesn't matter how ridiculous and nonsensical the technology in this country is, they won't be able to spot it until it's right on top of them. And, given the rod's supersonic velocity, is far too late.

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    $\begingroup$ You're after number 6: If violence wasn’t your last resort, you failed to resort to enough of it. $\endgroup$
    – Separatrix
    May 4, 2020 at 7:50

Starve Them

The island's defenses have one major problem. They're on a small island. A highly modernized small island implies either a large population, heavy industrialization, or huge human footprint on the landscape. Island histories are rife with the native ecosystem being destroyed due to human consumption of resources (see: every island in the Pacific), and a highly modernized island implies a much more intense usage of natural resources to produce complex machinery and feed people.

It's not entirely clear where this island is getting its food from. Nevertheless, that is where you would want to strike. If they are feeding their population by fishing their waters (as most island nations do), torpedo the boats as they leave. They would have to leave the safety of the island to get far out enough at sea in order to be able to harvest sufficient marine life. If it's on the island...somehow...all you need to do is cripple the food-producing infrastructure. Burn the fields, that sort of thing. Tactically inserted commandoes could do it, inserted by water since you can't drop them in from the air. Because they're a small island, they don't have a lot of room for error in resource mismanagement or ability to store large quantities of food for a siege. Destroy means of food production and the island starves, society breaks down over, and you defeat the island with little to no casualties.

A good modern example of this is Hawaii, which is a highly modernized island with a large population. Hawaii imports 85-90% of its food, and is highly dependent on shipments from the outside. It can't support its present population with the farmland it has. If someone were to stop food shipments into Hawaii, the population would be screwed and there would be mass starvation and death until populations dropped to a manageable level (or got even lower due to mass riots and destruction of infrastructure). Cuba is the same way, importing 70-80% of its food. Japan is also pretty bad. Indeed most islands that have undergone a signficant degree of infrastructure tend to be very non-self sufficient.

  • $\begingroup$ Did you not read the other question before posting this? this island is 50 years ahead of anyone else to be self sufficient like I said in the other question they would use hydroponics or something like that. And inserting commandoes by water wouldn't work because railguns and predator drone are there to deal with ships $\endgroup$ May 4, 2020 at 4:48
  • $\begingroup$ @Zeronineseven This answer is the definition of a siege. And hyrdroponics don't work well if you blot out the sky (which may be a valid approach to solving these problems if you don't have a way to attack. $\endgroup$
    – Cort Ammon
    May 4, 2020 at 6:03
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    $\begingroup$ @Zeronineseven In that case you need to update this question. You didn't mention it in this question, so this is a valid answer. $\endgroup$
    – Graham
    May 4, 2020 at 11:19
  • $\begingroup$ @Zeronineseven I'm talking about launching them from a boat far offshore outside the island's defenses and using a DPV to send them the rest of the way. Landings like that are far less noticeable and the island can't watch every square inch of beach at once. I know militaries today can use similar tactics for espionage and covert military action. And hydroponics can be destroyed as easily as fishing boats or fields. Self-sufficient or not, because of their high population and small land their ability to recover from damage to food production will be limited. $\endgroup$ May 4, 2020 at 19:42

Nuke 'em till they glow: Sequential nuclear bombardment (instead of mass bombardment).

Sure, their electronics will withstand the air-bursts, just out of range of their "metal storm"...but their sensitive antennas won't survive the shock waves a few seconds later. So give them five-or-six near-simultaneous air-bursts from cruise missiles. Then, within a minute or two, a second set of closer air-bursts. Then a lovely rain of ground-bursts on key military targets.

Then your Air Force swoops in for wave after wave of conventional precision bombing (in protective suits!), mopping up weapon emplacements, bunkers, ships, fuel storage, power stations, troop concentrations. Oh, and off-camera: Hospitals and water purification plants, too. You don't stop until you are absolutely sure that their retaliatory capability has been degraded to ineffective.

No real need to nuke the (non-combatant) cities...with so many dirty bursts nearby, the population will succumb soon enough.

Um, remember to quietly evacuate your capital and largest city before you start launching all the cruise missiles, just in case their retaliation does show up.


You are basically asking if there is an unstoppable force that can move an immovable rock. I say this because you explicitly point out that the city is unsiegable.

The answer is that you make the rock want to move.

Find out what sort of things they care about. Food? Water? Poison these things. If they use hydroponics, blot the sky out with smoke, so they don't have light. Do it from outside the range of the island defenses. In fact, make it stinky smoke. Make them want to stop defending.

Play loud sounds. This is a known technique for disturbing people, especially those who are not trained in psychological warfare.

Understand their resources. Firing guns isn't free. Firing missiles is less free. How are they acquiring these resources, and how much do they have stockpiled? Out-live them. If you can spend 10% of your economy on war, when they spend 100%, you will always win just by outlasting them.

In the end, you will find that it is not possible to assail the impenetrable castle without knowing your enemy. What do they want? Prevent them from having it. I can't answer that one for you, because its your impenetrable island citizens in your mind, not in mine.

And don't be afraid of being surprised by the answer. They say you attract more flies with honey than vinegar, but it's actually not true. Vinegar is a sign that there is fruit ready to eat... so surprisingly the fruit flies like it even more than honey.

And remember, no plan ever survives first contact with the enemy. If your island goes on the offensive, rather than playing a turtle, no answer can give will be complete.


So, they're self-contained, and will become violent if not allowed to play at the table with the big boys?

I'm assuming you're going to claim your magic forcefields and 'metal storm guns' (whut?) are going to make nukes and kinetic impactors ineffective (umm, how?). Otherwise, bomb 'em till they glow, or are driven into the Earth's crust/drowned by subsuming their island.

You're going to say 'can't be starved' cuz 'they're self-reliant in everything lolz!'.

Do they need to interact with the world at all (need trade?), if so blockade and blow up whatever they bring out, until they're ready to conquer the world (all of their excursions are as well protected as their homebase: ie: they expand and take over everything).

Not every element is available to undersea mining and you have to be able to go get it without getting blown up. Unless you've secured the seafloor with your forcefields and MSGs, the world could emplace nukes on the seafloor as close as they can get to the island, to be set off whenever islanders go out to harvest.

Some materials are very hard to get, and only occur in a few places. In fact, there's a single-source geographic stranglehold on economically produced microchips in the real world. Want to medieval the world? One good nuke could do it.

Basically, your Mary Sue island is going to have to take over the world with their superior technology.

  • $\begingroup$ 'Metal Storm' is a multibarrel high rate of fire weapon. Nothing terribly exciting beyond that. The idea is to put as much metal in the air as possible to obviate the need for accuracy. $\endgroup$
    – Separatrix
    May 4, 2020 at 7:47
  • $\begingroup$ And this metal storm is going to prevent nukes and kinetic impactors exactly how? $\endgroup$
    – user3082
    May 4, 2020 at 7:55
  • $\begingroup$ almost certainly make no difference at all $\endgroup$
    – Separatrix
    May 4, 2020 at 7:58
  • $\begingroup$ I mean, I guess it might take out a EPW, but who would lead with one of those? You'd lead with an airburst nuke, and if needed you'd just start your series further away, until you scourged the surface of all MSGs, then drop EPWs. I guess he'll have to depend on magic forcefields. Of course, he also has to have some type of forcefield to prop the island up, or it would be piledriven into the crust of the earth. Which is going to take direct mass to energy conversion equipment, I think. Thors might not be enough, might have to redirect asteroids at them to keep them under bombardment. $\endgroup$
    – user3082
    May 4, 2020 at 8:10

Conventional warfare clearly wouldn't work against this country, but there are still a few options that could be done to take this country out.

1) Orbital bombardment. The countries launch payloads into space, hopefully secretly or under a guise. These payloads are tungsten rocks or rods with = maneuvering thrusters. When these payloads pass near the island nation, they initiate the thrusters and aim for their target. If they get blown up in space, then the countries resort to option 2. If not, then these space-projectiles hurtle towards the island nation at terminal velocity and depending on their size, would be as damaging as a nuke. They also wouldn't be stopped by anti-missile defenses, because they're projectiles, not missiles. When they land, the island nation will be wiped out. One and done, conflict over.

2) So the first plan failed. In a last ditch attempt, the offense launches every single missile(and any railguns if they can get them close enough) all at once(coordinated so they arrive at the same time). With so many missiles, the island nations defenses will be overwhelmed and some will get through, destroying the defenses and killing everyone.

3) if those haven't worked, these nations either throw in the towel and accept they are outclassed, or they say "screw it" and they launch their nukes. The nukes will explode before reaching the missile defenses. The radiation created by hundreds of nuclear detonations will kill everyone on the island. This tactic might also render the earth uninhabitable, but it will have been worth it.


Since every technological advantage is over matched (or will be after a re-write).

I would take an alternative,

  1. Corrupt, bribe, blackmail someone for the technology, or for an exploit in defenses.
  2. Find friendly factions within the island, for point 1.
  3. Information Operation to undermine islands motivation
  4. Engage in civilian trade, diplomatic mission, gift a big wooden horse , smuggle in nuke.
  5. Ignore them. Maybe spend your money on research not weapons. I mean you only have the entire worlds resources at hand, over time you should catch technologically.

Drown them through climate change

Allright, they can't be nuked or attacked, or blocked, any embargo will probably trigger retaliations. Moreover, the rest of the world's unity is fragile, and a long-term embargo until the technology difference fades away is a little too long.

However, being on an island without much high altitude land makes them very vulnerable to rising waters. Even if they still have some land which is not easily flooded, they would loose much of their agriculture, thus making them depend on imports and very dependent.

So start to use fossil fuel, and enjoy beef as a main source of protein. In public, fossil fuel is used because you don't have any other options to provide a respectable living standard to your population. In private, that you burn it to piss off the islanders is just a popular joke, especially among people working in coal mines. Little by little, the non-islanders will become more and more dependent on oil, and antagonism with the islanders will rise.

The islanders have then two main options:

  • Prevent everyone to use fossil fuel. Is likely to trigger a massive outrage in the rest of the world that they couldn't contain. Even after an invasion of the entire planet, imposing a strict ban is going to be very hard.

  • Transfer some of their cool sustainable technology.

As a bonus, no one will ever know why you really promoted these fossil fuel technologies so much.


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