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Official Site: Robert A. Heinlein
The Mobile Infantry (MI) is a fictional military force in Robert A. Heinlein's novel Starship Troopers and in the movies Starship Troopers, released in 1997, the 2004 sequel, Starship Troopers 2: Hero of the Federation, the 2008 film Starship Troopers 3: Marauder and the TV series Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles. The MI is portrayed differently in each version.
The Mobile Infantry is an elite fighting force of the Terran Federation. Their training is depicted as extremely strenuous, with a few dying before completion. The book's narrator, Juan Rico, describes how out of his entire 2000 man training unit, fewer than 200 make it all the way through. A Mobile Infantryman is equipped with a Powered Suit as well as an arsenal of weapons at his disposal, some built into the suit. These weapons range from conventional firearms to micro-nuclear warheads. The armor is strong enough to resist any conventional weapon less than high explosive or anti-tank rounds. The servo-motors give the wearer enough strength to crush a tank or tear through a concrete wall, but are dexterous enough to allow them to pick up an egg without breaking it. The armor is also equipped with jump jets and rocket, allowing the trooper to move rapidly about the field. One expression used in the book as a compliment to good soldiers is that they are "on the bounce."
According to Rico, when one is suited up in the powered armor, they appear like a "steel gorilla".
Usually, an MI platoon would drop from individual capsules launched from a troop transport in orbit. The capsule is used only once. The MI platoon will then execute its mission. These missions range from hit-and-run strikes to search and rescue missions. The MI will usually deploy about one trooper every half-mile. After the mission is complete, the Transport will launch a retrieval beacon for the platoon to follow to the retrieval area. Usually the beacon will play music such as, in the case of the TFCT Rodger Young, "The Ballad of Rodger Young." Once the retrieval boat lands, the platoon boards and returns to the transport.
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