The Holy Land by Robert Zubrin
One of the strong points of the original Star Trek series was that, aside from being science fiction, it was also social commentary; the series expressed Gene Roddenberry’s view of society. Now, Robert Zubrin brings us a piece of science fiction satire that will leave his readers shaking their heads with disbelief. Reading the dust jacket tells you all you need to know about the story:
To save the Minervans from oppression in the central galaxy, the liberal Western Galactic Empire relocates the sect to their ancient homeland of Kennewick, Washington. But for the fundamentalist fanatics who rule the United States, the presence of pagans in the holy city is intolerable.
When direct assault to expel the intruders fails, the U.S. government tries to mobilize galactic opinion by moving the Kennewickians into miserable refugee camps and recruiting their children for suicidal attacks on the Minervans. But this play for sympathy falls on deaf ears of the policy makers of the mighty WGE.
If the Minervans are ever to be removed, the WGE needs to receive a more forceful message, and the President and his cabinet are prepared to deliver it. Camps for training planet assassins are set up. Soon, billions of pagan aliens will know the wrath of the followers of Jesus.
Unfortunately, there is one little problem with this brilliant plan.
There are very few surprises in the book, as all parts of the story should be familiar to anyone who follows current events, but it makes for an entertaining read as Zubrin skewers the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, the war on terror, and more. Needless to say, if you’re looking for an original story, this may not be the book for you. But if you don’t mind a bit of satire, it’s kind of fun seeing how the author brings together so many elements of today’s society into the world of the future.