The government is upset with the way the citizens are responding to lack of care, jobs, etc. So is dropping bombs on their own country (in a way to stop the revolting and keep the citizens in line) appropriate, if the citizens are rioting and creating resistances against the existing government?


closed as off-topic by sphennings, Mołot, Vincent, L.Dutch, Azuaron Oct 17 '17 at 16:03

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    $\begingroup$ Appropriate? No. Usually done? Yes $\endgroup$ – nzaman Oct 17 '17 at 14:35
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    $\begingroup$ Very reasonable. On top of that: If you drop enough bombs, some of those problems will get solved. The construction industry will boom, less jobs will be needed and more money per citizen can go into social care $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 Oct 17 '17 at 14:35
  • $\begingroup$ @nzaman Usually done? Where do you live? $\endgroup$ – Raditz_35 Oct 17 '17 at 14:36
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    $\begingroup$ @Raditz_35: Planet Earth... $\endgroup$ – nzaman Oct 17 '17 at 14:36
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    $\begingroup$ Welcome to the site, Lovi. Are you asking this question as a geopolitical inquiry, or because you want to know if a certain group of people -- in this case, an unspecified form of governing body -- would take a specific action in response to a specific catalyst? The former question might be straying from the purpose of the Worldbuilding SE, while the latter might be straying into storybuilding. $\endgroup$ – Frostfyre Oct 17 '17 at 14:39

TL/DR -- Yes, yep, and heck yeah. Our own history is rife with it

Well ... where I grew up the idea was that the government exists at the people's sufferance, and it would be beyond gauche to drop bombs on citizens. So...

You're worldbuilding, right? You need to find an ethos which makes the government decide that bombing their own populace is (a) conceivable, (b) appropriate, and (c) the best option.

Some thoughts:

  • Maybe the government identifies as a different people than the citizenry. Think Gothic overlords in Roman lands. If those cats had had airstrike capability they would have used it liberally on the peons, whom they didn't much like anyway.

  • Could be the aristocracy has some kind of religious mandate, and it is impious to oppose them [1]. Those heretics down in the streets deserve what they get for opposing the Chosen One's government!

  • Might be that the government is led by some kind of "vanguard party" which is defending some kind of philosophy or ideology. If other parties are illegal, street demonstrations are nearly obscene! [2]

  • Could be as free, nice, and rational of a government as you want. But the nation is in crisis. Invasions in the provinces or whatnot. All effort must be spent making weapons to repel the foe. Rationing is strict because there's barely any food. We have to get people back to work if there's any chance of winning the war!

All the above have analogues from our own world. If you want to get all fictiony on us, hmm...

  • The birthrate is skyrocketing. There are too many people. Some must be slain or we will all starve!

  • For sinister reasons, we want to invade Country X. What a shame an airplane painted in their hated colors dropped bombs on our beloved populace! But hey, the war party is suddenly so much more popular...

And so on. Good luck quelling the Revolution!

[1] Side-note. In the Byzantine Empire, the Emperor was the Viceregent of Christ. Meaning that it was God's will that he be in charge. Hence attempted usurpation was criminal and blasphemous, and punished hideously. However, successful usurpation just showed God's will in action, yo.

[2] Nothing from this bullet point is stolen from real history. Honest.


Usually, governments have less heavy-handed methods to deal with riots, i.e. riot police. Bombs destroy the riches of the state - so is, government taxes are literally blown up - and just because of this is not a good idea, moral aside. Bombs are used normally when people is starting to riot very violently, and they are armed - and they may win. In these cases, it's called a revolution or a civil war, depending on how much support the government is able to muster.

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    $\begingroup$ Also bear in mind that bombs per se are a comparatively recent invention. Until the internal combustion/diesel engine was invented, there was simply no way to get explosive ordnance/artillery to a riot fast enough. It's only since the start of the last century that we had aircraft and tanks. Before that, the options were hand held mortars (only useful against large,stationary targets), and grenades. The problem with the latter was that it was far too easy to cause massive carnage in your own ranks if just one grenadier were captured or mutinied in the face of having to attack civilians. $\endgroup$ – nzaman Oct 19 '17 at 7:24

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