Somewhere in Metropolis, inside Clark Kent's apartment, the PC displayed the message "Password accepted." Kal-El smiled to himself, it had only taken him four hours at super speed typing to find the algorithms in order to get inside the pentagon's mainframe network.
The primary number sequences had protected the network from any unknown access. Now he had bypassed the security layer and created an invisible user that could surf the network undeterred. He blew another frigid breath onto the PC's outer case to cool the machine and began his search.
Clark's newspaper articles helped many people worldwide, and occasionally so did Superman's heroics. However, Superman's rescues were primarily personal and he was quite happy with them at that level. Clark's investigative reporting helped many more people, and he felt that he gave the biggest value to the people in that way. This investigating was the meat and potatoes of his life. Of course there would always be those days when some bug-eyed monsters from outer space with a bad attitude came here to get their asses kicked and he would have to oblige them.
He was searching for a file number 23. Clark had received information regarding the secrecy of this file, but the informant had been garroted while on the phone. Fourteen other people had been killed in the same way in the last three days. Superman was quite helpless without information. Kal-El gritted his teeth and then smiled.
He was in a directory called 'OCEAN'. A subdirectory was entitled "WETOPS". He downloaded the entire subdirectory and continued searching, while he booted up his local network and began reviewing the subdirectory. Under the subdirectory were folders labeled FILE0001 through FILE9999. He opened the one named FILE0023.
As soon as he did that he received an Email that was encrypted and undeliverable on his local network. It had bumped against his firewall and came back. He stared at the man's name and then entered an eight digit number that he remembered from surfing through the personnel file a few minutes ago. The Email was instantly decrypted and unprotected for him and he read the simple text.
Unauthorized copying and opening! File currently resides on local network owned by Clark Kent, 1234 Wilshire Drive, apt. 7007, Metropolis. Carry out standing order number 23-342. Black Ops Squad 23.
This was very interesting. If he had opened the folder on-line, he was sure someone would be on their way to killing him. He mused maybe he could play mouse in a game with the Ops squad. He had run across them before.
Each country had its own version of them, totally faceless, totally patriotic, totally dedicated, and totally professional. They were known as death squads throughout the world. Neither Superman, nor Clark Kent had convinced a single government that they were unnecessary. He had caught many of these people before and invariably they killed themselves before talking.
He then read the directory listing for the FILE0023 folder, and opened the oldest files first. His eyes caught the important data as he scanned.
1969: World Health Organization Report Analysis . Increased New Cancer rates in South American Countries . Skin Cancer, Retinal Cancer, Thyroid Cancer, Stomach Cancer Liver Cancer, Lung Cancer . All at rates consistent with radiation fallout studies Conducted in Colorado and Utah
1970: United Nations Security Council Action to divert attention from
Nuclear Bomb testing proposal.
. Study to be conducted about natural or other causes of Cancer rate increases.
. Results to be forwarded after 10 years.
. Absolute secrecy to be maintained.
. Executive Action - File 23 Termination Authority . Neutralize all security leaks.
. Appropriation to be included in Atomic Energy Commission Funding
1980: World Heath Organization Study Summary
1. Increasing Cancer Rates caused by high concentrations of
radioactive heavy metal molecules in the food chain in the
2. Consistent with Fall-out Particle's or Ultra-violet Solar Wavelengths.
3. Proposal for VanAllen-Belt or Ozone Layer studies to validate potential threat.
4. Proposal for Media disinformation policy regarding VanAllen/Ozone.
1983: United Nations Security Council report Analysis 1. A hole in the Ozone layer can be blamed for the increased Cancer cases. 2. Scientific authority required for disinformation policy. a. Utilizing Environmentalist Movement as conduit. b. Blame to be placed on Automobile Air conditioning units leaking Ozone depleting chemicals.
Kal-El worked a few more hours then made a few phone calls. He dressed in a blue pinstripe suit and headed out the door. He reached into his pocket, withdrew his Hornrims, and then put them on. When he got to Perry's office, he waited until Perry acknowledged him then said, "Here's my story on the Telephone killer, I have to wash up."
Perry picked up the story and turned at the tapping on the window to see Superman floating outside. He opened the window. Superman handed an envelope to Perry and then whooshed away as Perry read the label "Superman's speech to the UN at 6:00".
Perry screamed at the phone. "We have got twelve minutes to clear the front page. Where's Lane? Where's Kent? Olson..."
"Ladies and Gentlemen of the United Nations, may I present to you our friend Superman."
Kal-El strode to the podium. He spoke. "Ladies and Gentlemen of the United Nations and the world, I apologize to you all for my failure to prevent or correct the situation that I am here to discuss today. We have all been misled by our leaders, some of them in this very room."
"My goal here today is to abandon the illusion and to bring to light facts regarding conspiracies and thus prevent further need for senseless blood being spilled and also to engender a treatment program for these victims."
"First let me state that the facts are documented and copies have been given to the network news agencies, and in Metropolis, the Daily Planet. These are the facts. By either independent or common agreement many members of the United Nations conducted above ground atomic and nuclear device testing during the 1940's, 1950's, and 1960's. These tests were concentrated in the South Pacific islands west of South America."
He continued,"In the last 30 years, Scientist have publicized the increased cancer rates in South America and they have been attributed to the Ozone layer being eroded by Freon. Yes, there is a hole in the ozone over both poles, but that hole grows and shrinks independently of any human intervention. The actual cause of these cancers, as determined by your own World Health Organization, is the radioactive heavy metals that occur microscopically through out the southern hemisphere and now are beginning to increase in the northern. These radioactive particles were thrown into the atmosphere by the atomic testing. The United Nations and its security council created the problem, and then solved it by the treaties banning bomb testing. However, it is now time to own up to the truth and help the cancer victims, as well as stop protecting a secret for secrecy's sake."
"Almost 600 people have been murdered to prevent the people of the world from knowing the truth." He then said, "The names of the member's of the various death squads have been given to police authorities to prosecute these fellows as well as their immediate supervisors. The round up of these murderers is happening as we speak. Each country will have to do as you will with them. My guess is that they will not allow themselves to be questioned. However they were all operating under the orders of the United Nations and therefore you all bear some of the responsibility. Thusly, I will ask that you substantially increase your cancer research and treatment programs, both internationally and within your own countries."
As the story was played out again and again on GNN, Kal-El shook his head in wonder. He murmured, "Now, That was a job for Superman!"