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Most of the time, when movies or video games depict zombies, they are given one crucial weakness; the head. Blow it off, and you stop the zombie.

The United States Army is well equipped to fight the foes which it finds itself against. A shot at center mass from 5.56 or 7.62 round will nearly always put a foe out of a fight- provided they are human.

However, how do they fare against something which lacks nearly none of our squishy, organ-based weaknesses?

In this scenario, zombies are immune (Or at least, heavily resilient) to practically all damage barring the loss of all mobility (Limbs), or complete destruction. Blow ones head off, it will continue to stumble forward to where it last saw you. Cut one in half, it will keep dragging itself forward. Set it on fire, it will continue to run at you, on fire now. Blow a hole the size of a basketball in it... you get the point. Even if you destroy it until its only an arm, that arm will keep crawling at you, until damaged to the point of immobility.

How does the US Army, particularly on a small arms basis, defeat these incredibly tough, unstopping zombies?

Additional factors regarding the zombies:

  • They are roughly 2.5x stronger than they would be as a human, their bodies lacking the restrictions which stop the muscles from overworking and damaging themselves
  • They are capable of moving at a speed equivalent to a jog, which they can keep up indefinitely.
  • They continually move around, and are attracted to sound, light, and human smell.
  • If they kill someone, that person is also an infected. If they see a body which died of non-infected causes, they can infect and reanimate it.
  • Initial infection is in New York (City), with an initial estimate of infected at 1-1.5 million, which will continue to spread. Some of these are underground.
  • Poison gas is ineffective
  • Broken bones, a bullet hole in their knee, or limb injuries which would otherwise immobilise a human don't stop them. Utter destruction of the limb, or its removal, are the only certainities.

Note: When I say necromorph-like, I mean in the sense they can only be put down by dismemberment and enormous trauma. They aren't capable of forming giant disgusting flesh monsters, nor are they being controlled by some malevolent Lovecraftian entity.

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  • $\begingroup$ Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. $\endgroup$
    – L.Dutch
    Sep 23, 2022 at 11:59

15 Answers 15

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Fence them in with razorwire, then burn them

It will be fairly quick to fence in New York City and environs with razorwire, which can also be mass-produced quickly in an emergency. Zombies will get stuck in the rolls of wire, and attempts to climb the wire will cut off fingers and toes. I assume the zombies are too mindless to use wirecutters.

Soldiers, the National Guard, and volunteers will patrol the fence and throw Molotov cocktails and firebombs at zombies, or burn them with flamethrowers or napalm. The fire will also disinfect the remains. Should some zombies get through the wire, they will also get the fire treatment. The beauty is that fire, unlike explosives, will not destroy the wirefence.

Infected areas will need to be firebombed from the air to cleanse them, and helicopters with searchlights and bombs will patrol the fences day and night to supplement the armed people guarding them.

enter image description here

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    $\begingroup$ Depending on how sciencey we want to get here, I'm not sure if this is a viable solution. I don't know what the structural degradation point due to heat is for razor wire, but I suspect fire would actually melt it at least slightly (if not completely), likely dulling the cutting edges. Similarly, I think it would be possible for a particular point to become overwhelmed and create a sort of zombie-meat staircase. $\endgroup$
    – Onyz
    Sep 21, 2022 at 16:05
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    $\begingroup$ "which can also be mass-produced quickly in an emergency" - Is there really a basis for that? Because I'm thinking face masks, and the world was definitely not ready to mass-produce them in a timely fashion. $\endgroup$ Sep 22, 2022 at 7:16
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    $\begingroup$ In movies, they will end pilling up and hide the razorwire, so they will end up bypassing that layer of protection. $\endgroup$
    – P-L
    Sep 22, 2022 at 12:56
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    $\begingroup$ @AmiralPatate - Generally speaking, making something designed to keep people safe is a lot harder than making something designed to be dangerous and hazardous (plus no regulatory hoops to jump through). Barbed/razor wire is easy to manufacture on machinery commonly used by a wide variety of industries. Many types can even be made with hand tools by unskilled laborers. Production historically ramps up very quickly when a major war breaks out, and a zombie apocalypse wouldn't be much different. $\endgroup$
    – bta
    Sep 23, 2022 at 1:23
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    $\begingroup$ @AmiralPatate Historically speaking, production of barbed/razor wire ramps up very quickly at the start of any major war in the last century. Existing production facilities have a lot of spare capacity in peacetime since demand is much lower. Move from one shift a day, 5 days a week to 24/7 production and your output is already more than 4x what it was. If you also divert product away from civilian uses, you could easily see an 8-10x total production rate boost in a manner of days. $\endgroup$
    – bta
    Sep 28, 2022 at 16:57
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Despite how tough the zombies are, they still rely on (weak) sensory organs to locate their targets. This implies to me that they would vulnerable to attacks on these sensory organs, and since they are unintelligent, they would be to stupid to defend from them.

Simply have the military wear ear and eye protection, and then start dispensing flashbangs like candy and using military laser weapons to blind vast swathes of them at once. Humans (civilians and soldiers alike) can easily protect themselves from attacks like this but the zombies can be blinded and deafened by the hoard.

Then, it's just cleanup. Blind and deaf zombies would likely just wander around aimlessly, perhaps seeking by smell if their olfactory senses aren't completely obstructed by rot and general zombie-ness, but it still wouldn't be better than human smell-sense (and only the very rare human is capable of using only their nose to navigate).

The military can then proceed with wholesale zombie disassembly. Perhaps using de-mining vehicles or similar army-engineer equipment.

De-miner

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    $\begingroup$ Better still, just park the de-miner somewhere and watch the Zs wander into the extremely noisy chain flail on their own. $\endgroup$ Sep 22, 2022 at 12:25
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Lure them into collection areas.

Yasser shows you how. He defeats about 1000 zombies and never fires a shot.

stealth

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xxng8Axnvlg

The game has devices that if I recall correctly are made with car alarms. You throw them. Wherever they land the zombies hear, come, and mill around. Yasser then offs them with molotov cocktails.

But you don't want your Yasser getting that close. You want strictly automatic because you know if there are humans involved something will go wrong and the zombies will get them.

This is completely automated. Containers of the container ship variety are placed on bridges, occluding them. Directions for bypassing the bridges are printed on the side in many languages; Z don't read. Loud noises emanate from the containers. Zombies that go in wind up falling thru a hole, off the bridge down a chute and into a tanker ship below.

No live people are there. Periodically a drone flies out and burns the zombies in the ship to make room.

Related: Zombie killing structure that's easy to construct, durable and low maintenance?

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    $\begingroup$ This is so efficient that it's disturbing. $\endgroup$
    – RedSonja
    Sep 21, 2022 at 9:15
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    $\begingroup$ You can make that even more efficient with spinning blades under the hole. Zombie falls in hole, pieces come out the other side. (That also gives you your noise source.) Even if the pieces are somewhat mobile, they aren't strong enough to get out of the tanker. Add a mesh floor in the tank so that pure liquid can be pumped out, whilst more solid remains can be incinerated. And it doesn't even need the humans to control the land at one end of the bridge; you just need soldiers to hold both ends long enough for engineers to install this, plus periodic refuelling. $\endgroup$
    – Graham
    Sep 22, 2022 at 9:17
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    $\begingroup$ Yeah really I think the short answer is "don't underestimate human's capacity to invent". Oh, guns aren't working? Well give us like a week. We'll invent something appropriate. $\endgroup$
    – JamieB
    Sep 22, 2022 at 18:28
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    $\begingroup$ Instead of burning them, each ship should be equipped with a giant treadmill. Zombies can jog "indefinitely," which is a loophole in thermodynamics. Thus, the Army's goal will be to corral and yoke as many zombies as possible rather than to destroy them. After a few years, much of our grid will be powered by tireless zombie joggers who require no food, water, rest, or medical care. $\endgroup$
    – Tom
    Sep 23, 2022 at 1:38
  • $\begingroup$ This is very dependent on whether zombies can cross rivers by walking on the bottom. It also only works in areas that can only be accessed by a few bridges. Once the zombies make it to mainland New York, that option is moot. $\endgroup$ Sep 26, 2022 at 8:10
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Deploy all armoured and mechanised forces from the US army and marines into New York area as rapidly as possible. This should include tanks armoured personnel carriers and any other hard skinned rugged vehicles that are available and ensure they have plenty of machine guns and ammo. Wherever available attach trailers (anything remotely robust and heavy that can be towed) or even heavy steel I beams welded in front of the tank to help knock over and crush zombies

Drive into town making plenty of noise with 3-4 tanks driving down each street run over anything that moves. Fire at anything that is not immediately accessible. Circulate in the city for a hour or two then with draw and send in fresh tanks while the first wave replenish fuel ammunition and trailer.

The carnage would be fearsome with tanks motoring down the streets at 30mph. Being attracted to the noise hundreds could be run down down per tank per minute. Big crowds would not be a problem as piles of bodies could be driven over with even more destructive power. Being driven over by a tank should drastically reduce zombie mobility and repeated runs should turn everything to mincemeat.

After that a "mopping up" operation with bulldozers etc and flame throwers / lots of petrol.

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  • $\begingroup$ I can easily imagine someone hacking together a steamroller and the remote steering electronics from an RC car. Not super speedy, but a zombie would have no way to stop it and wouldn't be smart enough to get out of the way. $\endgroup$
    – bta
    Sep 22, 2022 at 23:42
  • $\begingroup$ Yes I suspect there are a lot of possibilities. In more sparsely populated areas a big four wheeled drive car (or any car at a push) could easily run down a dozen or more zombies/minute, although might be susceptible to being overwhelmed in very dense crowds as they might get bogged down in the blood. $\endgroup$
    – Slarty
    Sep 23, 2022 at 7:22
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Targeted/Customized Nerve Gas

You mention that “poison gas” won’t work, which makes senses, since interfering with human biological processes won’t kill something that doesn’t need to breathe or otherwise function like we’d expect an animal to.

So instead of targeting human biology, target the necromorph biology. In order to animate the body, it has to be sending signals somehow (to trigger muscle contraction and extension). That has to happen by explicable and observable chemical pathways.

Sarin and other nerve gasses inhibit acetylcholine degradation, causing muscular paralysis in humans. Since necromorphs are immune to that, they must be using a different pathway to control muscles. Find the neurotransmitters that this infection is using and develop an effective and easily dispersed gas to target them.

Bonus, since it’s completely different than human biology, it might even be totally safe for humans to breathe, reducing casualties considerably.

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Not Army: Industry:

A bit of a frame shift. Your zombies aren't behaving like an army, or fighting a war. Instead, they are behaving like a force of nature fueled by human population.

  • Harvesters: Use agricultural machines. A harvesting machine is built to feed in lots of matter, chop it up and blow the bits out or under the machine. With a few modifications, they can be converted into zombie manglers. A Zombie chopped into a hundred pieces might still technically be a threat, but good luck with them getting you. Soon your harvester is like a tank - invulnerable to zombies, chewing them up, running them over, and driving back to a cleaning facility to be disinfected and refueled. Hey, is that an elbow moving?

enter image description here

  • Traps: Similar to harvesters but less mobile. A set of chutes offers zombies an easy path towards obvious prey. But a set of chainsaws or rotary saws systematically slices the zombies into thin sections which are then dropped into an industrial meat grinder. A person on a motorcycle drives around, aggro's a bunch of zombies, and leads them to the factory. Or feed lot. Or saw mill. Now what to do with all the zombie paste?
  • Biology: Okay, at some point, these things will start to break down. Whatever is making them go can't completely change chemistry. So start culturing bacteria that break down dead human flesh. EEWW!!! Well, not half as gross as being eaten alive. The zombies must be partially liquid (or they'd stop moving) so they would be susceptible to accelerated rot. I'd suggest crop dusters. Now necrophagous (corpes-eating) flies and beetles are bred and dumped in high density areas and the zombies are being digested, used to breed maggots, and surrounded by blinding, buzzing insects everywhere they go. Once the zombies are infected and the insects are spreading, they will go along with the zombies (the food source) and digest any fresh zombies. If the zombies do nothing, they're bug food. If they swat the things, they're going to be preoccupied with not being eaten. Poetic justice, no? enter image description here
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  • $\begingroup$ I lost my lunch after seeing the image. Thanks for traumatizing me for the rest of my life ;( $\endgroup$
    – Hi0401
    May 26, 2023 at 5:17
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Build moats or walls to corral them and then blow them sky high with explosives

Assuming laws of mechanics have been partially suspended:

Small arms won't do it here. If single limbs and body portions still work, then logically total disintegration is needed. So small arms are out.

As the soldiers will probably be outnumbered and don't have unlimited amounts of high explosives, they need concrete walls or deep moats to corral the zombies. Then blow them sky high with explosives.

TNT, nitroglycerin, etc, are easy to synthesise with basic ingredients, as are ANFO weapons.

Large woodchippers can be used for cleanup work.

If a stalemate is reached, soldiers from all over could converge slowly on one city, drawing in millions of zombies, and fly out on planes before the place gets nuked.

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    $\begingroup$ +1 I was going to suggest something similar. It's in NYC, so set up lures to turn the subway system into a giant network of pits, remove means of egress, drop explosives down shafts, repeat until you run out of either zombies or explosives. $\endgroup$
    – Ottie
    Sep 20, 2022 at 11:12
  • $\begingroup$ Ask yourself whether identifiable bodies are ever found after bombings. If they are, it won't kill zombies. And they are, so it won't. Even nukes and firebombs won't. $\endgroup$
    – Graham
    Sep 20, 2022 at 16:39
  • $\begingroup$ @Graham Many bombings completely destroy many bodies completely. And those are often by amateurs, not in confined spaces. I grant you, this is a pretty challenging scenario, but if total disintegration is the only option, explosives are the only logical option. The rest is just getting bang for buck and keeping soldiers alive. $\endgroup$
    – user86462
    Sep 20, 2022 at 16:55
  • $\begingroup$ @SeanOConnor They'll destroy some bodies completely, sure. The problem is that anything not destroyed is still coming for you. It might knock them down to a point you can run over the remains with a road roller though to finish them off. :) $\endgroup$
    – Graham
    Sep 21, 2022 at 9:56
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    $\begingroup$ @SeanOConnor Bonus points if we can have it driven by a coyote, and the zombies go "meep meep" instead of "braaaaains". $\endgroup$
    – Graham
    Sep 22, 2022 at 9:06
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Even though they are immortal and stronger than normal human, they still need to follow the rules of a humanoid body.

If you remove all their limbs, the pieces will only be able to crawl/roll.

A severed zombie head can still bite if you are in range, but if you destroy the jaw, it can't do anything to you.

A zombie finger can't even scratch you properly as it has no leverage.

In the anime Full Metal Alchemists, the homunculus are effectively identical to your zombies (sans the ability to infect). Olivier Mira Armstrong's order is to knock out their jaws (with rapiers and muskets).

So the US Army should have no problem turning the zombies into tiny meat pieces (machine gun, minigun, explosives) which can no longer move effectively and are thus of little threat.

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They are roughly 2.5x stronger than they would be as a human, their bodies lacking the restrictions which stop the muscles from overworking and damaging themselves

That's a massive disadvantage, and an exploitable one. Force them to overexert themselves and they'll pull muscles, dislocate joints, break bones, etc. The dead don't heal, so this damage is permanent. That means your best weapon against them is time.

NYC is a peninsula, so isolating it would be relatively easy. Destroy the bridges and wall it off from the rest of the world. Then, just wait. The zombies will accumulate injuries over time as they try to escape and chase their prey, and many will end up completely immobile and unable to function. You can accelerate the process by air-dropping traps into open areas.

You can reduce their effectiveness from a safe distance using directed energy weapons. Such weapons in our world are tuned to avoid doing permanent damage, but you'll be turning them up to 11. An acoustic device like the LRAD can damage or destroy their ability to hear, and an electromagnetic device like the Active Denial System can blind them by literally boiling the fluid in their eyes. Both can be operated from a helicopter, or from a tower at a safe distance.

The occasional zombie might find their way out from time to time, and you'll have patrols trained to stop them before they can advance across the several miles of no-mans-land between the wall and the rest of civilization. Zombies may be fast, but your army's vaquero division can easily catch them either on motorized vehicles or on horseback. Immobilize them from a safe distance with a bolo or lasso, then close in and finish them off.

One good way to prevent escapees in the first place is with electric fencing. Standard electric fencing works by inflicting pain and making you not want to touch it. In contrast, your fencing will more or less be connected directly to mains AC power. When a zombie touches the fence, the electricity will force the muscles to spasm and contract. They'll be unable to let go as the energy burns them from the inside out. Hit them with a wooden pole to knock them back off the wall, or wait for their arm muscles to sustain enough damage that their hands become useless.

That's a big fence, though, and will require a ton of electricity. Where is all that going to come from?

They are capable of moving at a speed equivalent to a jog, which they can keep up indefinitely

Zombies + giant hamster wheels = all the electricity you'll ever need

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    $\begingroup$ Zombies + giant hamster wheels = all the electricity you'll ever need +1 lol $\endgroup$ Sep 23, 2022 at 1:27
  • $\begingroup$ If they only jog slightly would the muscles get damaged at all? (Not counting occasional accidents) I heard that muscles only get cut if you use over 70% of your force $\endgroup$
    – Hi0401
    Jan 12, 2023 at 3:59
  • $\begingroup$ @Hi0401 All moving parts suffer from friction and wear as they move. They won't suffer sudden catastrophic damage like you'd see from overexertion, but they would indeed wear themselves out over time. You could of course expedite the process by constructing scenarios that force the zombies to over-exert themselves. $\endgroup$
    – bta
    Jan 18, 2023 at 19:42
  • $\begingroup$ Ohhhhh Okay thanks $\endgroup$
    – Hi0401
    Jan 19, 2023 at 11:52
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Just shoot them.

It takes an average of 250000 rounds to kill a single Iraqi soldier. A lot of that is suppressing fire or training rounds, but really, we are used to firing a lot of rounds to kill something. It's also not uncommon for people to take a ton of drugs and be able to tank a few bullets.

Focused concentrated fire will get them down. Rip their bodies apart with focused fire, and then burn the corpses with flamethrowers. Wear slash proof armor that will resist random arms with no leverage cutting you.

Ask Israel for help with handling underground soldiers.

They have extensive experience with an enemy who uses underground tunnels to attack people. Use electronic sensors which detect acoustic and seismic features, UAVs, and flood barriers to keep them from escaping or ambushing you. Digging is a very slow and noisy process because you have to move tons of dirt, so it shouldn't be that hard to detect enemies.

Lure them into ambushes and slice them up with artillery.

They're attracted to human sounds and smells and such? Record such sounds, get human cells, and use them to lure out necromorphs to kill them.

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    $\begingroup$ The maths don't work for the supply chain. Let's suppose we have 2 orders of magnitude less bullets needed here, so 2500 rounds per zombie. Then to kill 1.5m zombies, you need 3.75 billion rounds. For comparison, the entire US military used around 6 billion rounds between 2002 and 2005. That means for one engagement, you need to supply as many rounds as were shipped to Iraq and Afghanistan in 2 years. $\endgroup$
    – Graham
    Sep 20, 2022 at 16:47
  • $\begingroup$ That would cause problems for a larger war, but the various government groups have a lot of ammo stockpiles around, and civilian stockpiles are pretty high as well. They can probably get together a few billion rounds. Ten million necromorphs might well make them run out. $\endgroup$
    – Nepene Nep
    Sep 20, 2022 at 23:15
  • $\begingroup$ @Graham And for that to really work, most of those bullets would have to hit. The 250,000 figure only happens because the vast, vast majority of those shots don't actually hit anyone, and weren't even necessarily trying to. I guess with zombies you don't really need suppressive fire, since they're not (generally) shooting back at you. But you do need to land a much higher percentage of your shots than you would with a typical target (where just one well-placed shot might be enough to take them down). $\endgroup$ Sep 21, 2022 at 18:26
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This answer is slightly meta, but please indulge me. Let me take us all back to school and remind everyone of the fundamentals of...

The zombie genre

Zombies, particularly the kind you describe, are literary metaphors for utter hopelessness, or perhaps even death itself, and they usually hold the "you can't defeat them" trump card by design. They keep coming back, by some way - even after a nuclear attack, their gasses would get back into the water supply and re-infect survivors. Zombies are typically slow but relentless - giving you lots of time to think of things to try to improve your situation. You may gain ground but only temporarily (e.g. shooting one knocks it over, and give you a moment to run away, but it eventually gets back up). Many things seem effective but ultimately are not. We are intentionally given an illusion of hope.

Having said that, zombie fiction explores what we as humans do when faced with an inevitably hopeless situation. It explores facets of the human psyche.

Literary works in the genre love to explore all the things we might try:

  • Making a last stand - with force. Board up the windows, gather food and ammo and give it our best "Alamo" effort.
  • Run. Perpetual fleeing, finding that next car with a little bit of gas to get to the next town, or an airplane that takes us to an even more remote island.
  • Seek out loved ones. Making sure we are are in the company of our loved ones when we face our ultimate demise is a human instinct that runs very deep, and spans many cultures.
  • Get a bigger gun. Calling in the army, dropping the nuke or whatever it is, just means that if we kick and scream hard enough, maybe we can win the unwinnable fight with force.
  • Carry on / go down with the ship. Some people just go about their typical lives, keep going to work and doing your job - sort of ignoring the problem. Keep playing the music even though the Titanic is sinking sort of thing. Ultimately the zombies will come, but we may just choose to accept our fate and let it come when it comes.
  • Outsmart it. This is kind of like making a last stand, but with strategy instead of force. We are eternally resourceful, and we attempt to keep our doom at arms length in a variety of innovative ways. We confuse, disguise, defer, delay and Wile E. Coyote our final days away until we slip up.
  • Fix the problem. We may seek to "cure" the zombies ultimately. To be true to the genre, outcomes are never good, the cure has limited effectiveness in some way.
  • Give up. The fear of an unfitting demise "not like this" may force us to choose to "go out" on our own terms (e.g. suicide of some sort)
    • the variant of "Changing teams", becoming a zombie ourselves, is a lot like giving up - but typically this just reinforces that this is a losing move by contrasting zombie life with human life to remind us that we really do lose something precious in defeat. "My mom/wife/teacher is a zombie" is really more of a monster movie trope and explores humanity of being different and it not part of the zombie genre.

Ultimately zombies represent our own mortality. We will all eventually die, but what shall we do with our time before our end? This is the zombie genre. It explores the human condition by shining bright stage lights onto the gruesome fear of death and its gradual but relentless pursuit of us. We study these stories closely to find our own way of justifying our own mortal existence.

. . .

So, having said all that, your military should be ultimately ineffective against zombies - by design of the genre. You, yourself, did not specify a mechanism by which the zombies could be defeated -- and rightfully so!

You are free to explore this dilemma of hopelessness in your own way as so many others have done before you. You're playing the military card, that's fine, all manner of attempts to push back the darkness must be made, including small arms fire. You don't have to be supremely clever to be successful. Whatever you come up with is fine. It's important to ask "what if...", and your answers may very well better our actual society or inspire future zombie stories. But I'll leave it to the other answers here to litter the landscape with more futile attempts to delay inevitable doom dressed in military uniforms.

But beware of the meta-opponent you face today: the zombie genre itself. You may get satisfying answers to your question, finding out a really clever military strategy to contend with the zombies, but the genre itself demands that after formulating any strategy to deal with zombies we always return to ask its most powerful question again, "but what if even that didn't work?"

If you betray the genre by providing an actual way out of the zombie apocalypse, then you are likely just an action story - not a zombie story. Zombies are not a Kobayashi Maru test for humanity. The point isn't to think outside the box and find a solution. The point is to spend time thinking about how you will play the game when it is certain you are going to lose. As each of us must do by choosing how we will live our mortal lives.

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    $\begingroup$ zombies being a kobayashi maru is a great way to look at it. $\endgroup$
    – IT Alex
    Sep 22, 2022 at 19:13
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    $\begingroup$ Interesting answer. Reminds me of a certain game with the same premise. You're going down either way but you can try to make the most of your time before that happens. $\endgroup$
    – Hi0401
    May 26, 2023 at 5:25
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Flood them

Not available everywhere, and depends on how desperate you are. But blow up the nearby dam and watch the tidal wave wash the zombies out to sea. The zombies will need to surive the mass of water hitting them and then the debris that is being carried by the water. Either way they are breaking most bones and likely losing limbs in the process. They'll also get pushed a long way away from where they started. Hopefully out to sea.

Of course it only works once in an area, but if you where desperate enough and needed to stop the spread.

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  • $\begingroup$ What if the fish eat the zombies though and get infected $\endgroup$
    – Hi0401
    May 26, 2023 at 5:25
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Exploding bullets. While these have been banned by treaties since the 1860s, I suspect that the zombie menace will need larger sized exploding projectiles than the 5.56mm or 7.62mm rounds that militaries typically stock. Except for sniper ammunition, current military bullets are intended to injure (not kill) the target, as a wounded soldier needs the services of other soldiers to haul the wounded away from battle and in the rear areas to treat the wounded. Dead bodies can be left where they fall. Except when they're zombies. Those need extra killing.

Cluster munitions. If the zombies travel in herds, or packs, then dropping cluster munitions from drones or aircraft would help reduce their numbers.

Land mines. I suspect something similar to the WW2 S mines or more modern claymore mines would be needed to shred zombies crossing into protected areas.

Does the response force need flamethrowers to finish off the mangled zombies? Could one drive over the wiggling remains with bulldozers or other tracked bug stompers suffice? Or do we need something like the "scoops" from Soylent Green to scoop up and "process" the zombies?

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I'm thinking of a way even normal citizens could use. Go in a concrete watchtower, (Or anywhere tall, fireproof, and zombieproof, meaning they can't get in) attract the zombies (Via screaming over a megaphone or something) then throw a molotov at them. They will slowly burn out. Rinse and repeat!

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They don't.

"Deal with zombies" is not a description of what you want the military to do, and is not particularly meaningful.

Depending what you actually want and the actual situation, they might do a million different things. Nukes everywhere! Build some walls! Conduct negotiations! The possibilities are endless.

Decide what the situation is and what your military is tasked with making the situation.

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  • $\begingroup$ The military's task isn't to conduct negotiations; it's to take care of the mess that ensues when the diplomats who are supposed to be negotiating fail at their job. $\endgroup$ Sep 22, 2022 at 19:05
  • $\begingroup$ @MasonWheeler I think you may have been misled by some especially bad TV. $\endgroup$
    – fectin
    Sep 22, 2022 at 21:02
  • $\begingroup$ Not at all; this comes from real-world conditions. It's why you get things like retired generals complaining about State Department budget cuts, stating things along the lines of "every dollar you spend there is ten we [the military] don't need to spend." $\endgroup$ Sep 22, 2022 at 21:07
  • $\begingroup$ pon.harvard.edu/events/… for example. $\endgroup$
    – fectin
    Sep 22, 2022 at 21:13

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