ARM (Amalgamated Regional Militia) began as a confederation of civil-defense organizations from every nation of Earth. The ARM then evolved into an enforcer of United Nations regulations, especially technology control: the ARM receives reports of any new technology and monitors its use and effects; it later extends its purview to include alien-Human affairs.
Their original (public) function was to control the distribution of new technologies that could be weapons. This grew over time into control and suppression of all new and some old technologies. The organization underlying the ARM has been around for centuries a least possibly for millenia - depending upon from what organization and time one chooses to measure from; it has, in effect been "guiding" humanity towards a single goal: Total peace through complete domination.
By the time of Louis Wu, the ARM has complete control over 18 billion human being on Earth, is a power in the Belt, and has tendrils in almost all human settlements (with the exception of Sheathclaws).
Some agents of the ARM are natural born schizophrenics (see Sigmund Ausfaller), some are artificially induced. The ARM employs these people because everyone (including their own agents) is taught a false history (e.g. that the last wars took place in the time of Galileo and that the V-series rockets were for "weather prediction") these falsehoods lead humanity into a "Golden Age" which is both endorsed by and, off-set by the presence of Jack Brennan. On a world where psychists are called in when a child strikes another, or a citizen indulges in Military-Fant their rule is both supreme and unnoticed. Their jurisdiction was originally limited to the Earth-Moon system; other human colonies have their own militia. Nevertheless, ARM agents operate or exert influence in other human star systems through the "Bureau of Alien Affairs". These interventions begin following the Man-Kzin Wars and the introduction of hyperdrive, presumably as part of a general re-integration of human societies (for the greater good, citizen). A connection with the Yakusa is intimated but never followed up.
ARM Characters Edit
This is a list, incomplete, of characters known to be current or past members of the ARM.