This exercise in creative imagination was written by me in May of 2005. It is a "what if" scenario based on the ascendancy of Christian power politics in the United States, and the coming ascendancy of China on the world stage, in light of our current "war on terror". I wondered: what could go wrong with this whole situation? Then I wrote this possible future history timeline. Who knows, I might write a novel within this framework some day. I have always enjoyed the science-fiction "dystopia" genre of novels and films (such as the books "Brave New World" and "Fahrenheit 451", as well as movies such as "Blade Runner", "Mad Max", and "The Matrix"). I just got finished reading a brilliant 1985 novel by Margaret Atwood entitled "The Handmaid's Tale". It is about how the United States, in the late 20th century, gets taken over by a totalitarian Christian fundamentalist regime called "The Republic of Gilead". Some days I wonder if we aren't too far from "Brave New World", and other days I wonder if we are not too far from "The Handmaid's Tale", and I know that both are far, far away from the Kingdom of God.
So taking all of these elements, I decided to publish this on my blog. Enjoy, and feel free to comment.
All dates are Anno Domini and imaginary. I make no claim to any type of future prophecy (for you apocalypse nuts out there).
The Republican presidential candidate, the leader in the United States Presidential race, is assassinated on the campaign trail. The blame is laid at the feet of the Leftists by the "new Christian right". A lack of compassion and remorse by the Democratic party is widely interpreted by the public as endorsement of the assassination. This leads to the lowest vote for the Democratic party ever in a national election. The Republican party wins an overwhelming majority in nearly every state and national election. The Democratic party is immediately ripped apart by infighting and blaming, and splits into dozens of conflicting parties, and effectively ceases to exist.
Credit default and bankruptcy reaches crisis levels across the western world. Nearly a quarter of the fortune 500 companies go bankrupt within the year, with untold thousands of smaller businesses going bankrupt. An economic depression unlike anything since the 1930's falls upon the western world, with unemployment reaching upwards of 50% in some urban areas of the United States and Europe. In a desperate move by some multinational companies, deadly computer viruses are released across the internet and intranets across the planet to destroy information commerce and thereby limit economic liability and loss from electronic transfers. The internet as we know it ceases to exist. There are mass riots in major urban centers across the planet.
Muslim and Christian religious revival breaks out across western society, and thousands of missionaries from both faiths stream into the Americas and western Europe from China, Korea, Africa, and the Middle East. In reaction to this, home grown American Fundamentalism that combines extremely conservative Protestant Christianity, and the "American Dream" begins a revival as well, resulting in mass riots against growing Muslim communities, homosexual enclaves, non-Christian religions, and non-indigenous forms of Christianity.
Thousands die in the welfare riots of 2013, as state sponsored welfare programs are cut off from all "able boded" adults. For religious and practical reasons, legislation is passed which stops government involvement in any type of welfare system for those who can work, and a system of "relocation camps" are created for those who are homeless. Most major urban centers in the United States are under some form of military enforced martial law. The country braces for civil war.
A Religious-Right wing controlled Republican party begins a "Bring back America" campaign that results in sweeping "reforms" of both the US government and society in general. The general consensus of the US populace is that the economic depression has happened because America "left God behind". As a result, several amendments are placed in the constitution. First, an amendment on religious freedom is added which states that the US is "one nation under God", which is the God of Christianity. In effect, all non-Christian religions and forms of atheism are outlawed. Other amendments are added to protect marriage between one man and one woman and outlaw abortion, cloning, and some forms of birth control. Freedom of speech is amended to protect only speech which "presents no spiritual, moral, or physical danger" to the American populace.
The same year the United Nations is kicked out of the United States and we effectively pull out of the UN and the world community at large. Huge tariffs are placed on the manufactured goods of all countries except those immediately adjacent to the US. The UN moves its headquarters to Beijing, China.
With social tension reaching crisis levels, a flag waiving cross bearing Republican party again sweeps the nation's elections by promising to "bring the glory back" to the United States, and espousing a new version of the "manifest destiny" doctrine of the late 19th century. They claim we will not be great again until we grow, and that it is God's will that we take the "American way" to every corner of the globe.
Within months after the election, the President and Senate begin pushing for a "United North America" so that God will truly "bless America". Under this pretext, Canada is annexed in a sweeping move, and occupied by the US military (thereby bringing its economic resources under US control). With Canada's anti-gun laws, there is almost no resistance to the US annexation. Some small resistance movements spring up in the Canadian hinterlands for the next two decades, but these are largely ineffective. Canadian wealth belonging to affluent Canadians who do not support the annexation find all their wealth "nationalized for the common good".
The international community is outraged and places an unprecedented embargo of all goods and services on the US, immediately sending the unemployment rate up another 5% across the country. China and the European Union become the defacto leaders of the world political and economic community.
With growing outrage in the US intellectual community over the actions of the government, sit-ins abound across the country. This is used as proof that Universities are the "last bastion of leftist Marxism and Anti-Americanism". Faculties are arrested en masse, and dozens of universities are disbanded and handed over to looting mobs. Across the country, leading intellectuals, along with homosexuals and those in non-Christian religions, are imprisoned for speech crimes that are "spiritually and morally dangerous".
Chinese and EU funded, trained, and equipped Islamic nationalist factions revolt against the young democracies of Iraq and Afghanistan and are victorious.
The US flag is amended to have 63 stars as all 13 provinces of Canada are given statehood status.
Islamic armies mass together in Syria and Lebanon to attack Israel. A sneak attack of a nuclear weapon on board a boat levels half of Haifa. The US and Israel launch tactical nuclear strikes on major Islamic urban areas, including Mecca. Nearly 80 million die immediately, and many more millions die of plague and starvation in the following months. The Middle East is decimated and effectively sent back to the middle ages. Fearing all out nuclear war and not wanting to commit suicide over the Islamic nations, neither the EU, India, or China elect to retaliate against Israel.
With the success of Israel interpreted as "God's will", and needing a distraction from the depression at home, the US decides to follow its policy of following her "manifest destiny" of inhabiting the entire American continent. The US passes legislation to annex Mexico, and immediately we invade. Mass riots occur in heavily populated Mexican immigrant communities, where harsh martial law is imposed killing tens of thousands, and sparking new revolutionary movements.
Within six months, Mexico is officially occupied by the US military (along with Cuba), but at a huge cost. There is a dedicated resistance movement and guerilla warfare across the new Mexican states, and most major urban centers in the southern US, California, and New York. As with Canada, Mexican wealth belonging to affluent Mexicans who do not support the annexation find all their wealth "nationalized for the common good". Millions take up jobs in the military and military support industries, as well as building new infrastructure. Unemployment is brought to manageable levels in the continental 49 states.
Most countries within the scope of Chinese and EU control cut off diplomatic relations with the US and close our embassies. Travel of US citizens to these countries is stopped entirely. Largely impotent and ineffective "sanctions" are passed by the UN against the US. China and the EU begin actively funding resistance movements in central America and Mexico.
Under increasing international pressure abroad, and facing a huge guerilla warfare problem in the new Mexican and Cuban territories, the US makes a non-aggression pact with China and the EU. In exchange for ceasing aggressive action in central America, China and the EU will cease supplying the anti-American guerillas and lift some economic sanctions.
Fearing further US aggression and wanting insurance against future conquest, South American countries make alliances with China and the EU, and are their armies are supplied generously and trained by large numbers of Chinese and European "consultants".
Mexico is split into 13 administrative districts, with Cuba as one more.
The US protests the build up of hundreds of thousands of Chinese and EU "consultants" in South America, and begins the build up of troops on the southern border of Mexico.
The US flag moves to 67 stars as four Mexican administrative districts are labeled "stable" enough to be fully integrated into US society. Guerilla violence is reduced to 10% of 2019 levels.
New trade agreements are made between the US and several of the Christian democracies of Africa. Weapons and training are supplied to west and central African countries to help them conquer the strong Muslim resistance in those countries, in what is now being called "the Final Crusade".
The nuclear "judgment" unleashed by "Allah" upon the Islamic culture in 2018 (including the vaporization of Mecca) has two paradoxical effects: First, many Muslims (especially in the Middle East, Africa, and America) forsake their faith as ineffective. Second, other Muslims, especially those in the former Soviet bloc and the EU, decide that this destruction is a wake up call by Allah to revitalize and wage even more potent "jihad" upon unbelievers. With the influx of immigrants from the desolate Middle East, the governments of Spain, France, and the Balkans are taken over by Islamic political groups. For the first time since the early middle ages, the Vatican is sacked by barbarians, this time in the form of Islamic mobs.
"The Final Crusade" in Africa results in the mass slaughter of Islamic communities, killing hundreds of thousands. In return, several African capital cities in Christian countries are nuked by France. Almost immediately, a cease fire and religious freedom is negotiated for all major Christian nations in Africa by the EU and the United States.
69 stars are put on the US flag as Cuba and one more Mexican district comes under US control. The southern Mexican border is transformed into a "demilitarized zone" where US and Central American armies nervously survey each other constantly.
China works with the EU and India in the United Nations to get severe sanctions placed on Japan and Taiwan. Taiwan is declared to be officially not a separate nation by the UN.
For the first time in history, the average per capita income of Chinese citizens in urban areas is equal to US citizens. Those in rural areas of China, however, still lack far behind.
The internet, version 3, is unveiled in Beijing. US servers are given a low priority in the new system, but basic financial transactions and information service is restored to most countries that have access to satellite information services.
The first decade of the "Bring back America" campaign is celebrated in the United States. Freedom of speech is at an all time low, and unemployment is still very high, and dozens of service men and women are dying daily in the Mexican provinces. Yet, after the "Leftist purge" of the media in 2016, the conservatively biased media is largely able to spin this as the necessary cost of America's "holy war" against the "forces of godlessness". The right wing Republicans are still supported by the majority of the American populace, especially in the largely safe areas of the US outside of Mexico and the Southwest.
As part of the festivities, dignitaries from Africa, Japan, and Israel are hosted at the celebration of two more Mexican districts becoming states, bringing the US flag to 71 stars.
Public rifts begin to form in the EU as Islamic controlled nations such as Spain, France, and the Balkans begin to take different stances from those advocated by Germany and central Europe. Countries like England and Italy are deeply conflicted and subject to frequent riots and social unrest.
In a daring move, China invades Taiwan after decades of threats. Tens of thousands are killed, and at least one tactical nuclear weapon is used (although details are sketchy because of the closed nature of the Chinese press). The UN barely winks an eye at the whole matter. The only countries to protest the matter are from the US led coalition. US fleets and air patrols go on high alert, although they are outnumbered three to one by Chinese fleets.
In terms of military technology, China and the United States are on par with each other for the first time in history, although many of China's reserve and second-tier military units still use 2000 era technology. China's advantage is that its military is six times the size of the US, yet it does not have the resources to effectively challenge US supremacy in the Americas.
China announces its new missile defense network which is able to protect all major cities and military bases from attack from US ballistic missiles by using hypersonic missiles. The US has had a similar system in place since 2010. US politicians begin to urge for a new arms race using hypersonic cruise missile technologies to deliver nuclear and bioweapon payloads.
Japan is put under a blockade by China to "persuade" them to annex to China. The US begins to actively challenge this blockade. By the end of 2021 two American ships and three planes are destroyed in "incidents" with Chinese forces. Yet, China pulls back its blockade from the Eastern side of Japan, allowing for US commerce.
Two more states are added to the United States from former Mexico, giving us now 73 stars on the flag. Only the most southern Mexican districts are still in active revolt. Guerilla activity is now at 4% of 2019 levels. As the former districts of northern and central Mexico get accustomed to US democracy, justice, and lack of corruption (compared to their former system of government) they actually begin to fall in line. The US pursues a policy of encouraging "authentic" Mexican Catholic culture as part of "God's manifest destiny for the United States". Many Mexicans embrace this as an affirmation of "La Raza".
By 2024, due to embargoes and the need to be self sufficient, US domestic industrial production was at 257% of 2011 levels (although with much lower pay per capita). If one includes Mexican industrial production, it goes up to nearly 300% of 2011 levels.
The number of European and Chinese "consultants" in South America reaches 300,000. In an accident during war games, a US fighter launches several missiles into the Demilitarized Zone in Southern Mexico. This results in three days of fighting between US and Chinese backed forces, with several thousand casualties. A cease fire is called, and the world backs away from the brink of Nuclear War. As a result, the Chinese controlled UN actually breaks with China and calls for earnest talks to open with the United States. The Chinese is called on to remove at least half of their "consultants" from South America and both sides are called on to remove half of their presence in the Mexican DMZ. The embargo on Japan's western coast, however, is maintained.
The rest of the year is uncharacteristically peaceful.
For the first time in a decade and a half, the Republican stranglehold is challenged in national elections. Protest groups begin to form against abuses in southern Mexican states and districts, as well as problems in urban areas. A revamped and Christianized Libertarian party gains up to a third of the popular vote (even gaining majority in some Canadian and Mexican states). Their platform is for a limitation of governmental power and a return to separation of Church and State which maximizes personal freedom (yet concerns for such things as legalization of drugs is dropped entirely from their platform). Their catch phrase is "One Nation under the Constitution". Right wing zealots try to stop them by accusing them of "morally and spiritually dangerous speech", but after a series of protracted legal battles not even right wing judges would convict.
In France and Spain a series of pogroms and riots erupt against Christians and Jews, with the result that thousands die and hundreds of Churches and Synagogues are razed by crazed Muslim mobs. For the first time in over a thousand years, the Pope was assassinated by a suicide bomber near the Vatican. The newly elected Pope calls on "all Christian nations" to protect the Holy See. In light of this crisis, Rome and the Eastern Orthodox Churches officially reunify, and all Christians who "confess faith in the Holy undivided Trinity through Jesus Christ" are accepted as full brethren in the Church. As a result the US and African nations send thousands of soldiers to protect Vatican City.
74 stars now adorn the US flag as one of the southernmost Mexican districts now becomes safe and secure.
China begins shipping "generation five" hypersonic nuclear cruise missiles to Peru. One shipment arrives and is put in place before the US places a blockade on the western coast of South America and sinks a Chinese tanker suspected of carrying nuclear missiles. This leads to five weeks of naval warfare between China and the US, with three dozen ships sunk and 29 aircraft downed. Again, the UN steps in and calls for a cease fire. Peace is restored, but troops and materials stream into the Mexican DMZ from both sides.
Israel has a brief war with surrounding armies who wage a half-hearted revenge for the nuclear attack on Muslim countries. 90,000 enemy troops and several thousand aircraft and tanks litter the Golan Heights and the Negev desert after two weeks of fighting. The US and "Christian" countries in Africa send troops to support Israel.
The EU officially divides into two, between Muslim nations and Secular nations, primarily because of issues of separation of Church and state and the use of Islamic law in the legal system. They remain unified in both currency, transport systems, and their negative stance toward the US and Israel. England remains a deeply divided nation, with religious revival spreading in Christian, Muslim, and Hindu communities.
Tensions die down between China and the US.
China declares its own version of "manifest destiny" in the Asian sphere of influence. Military presence is stepped up in North Korea and the western Japan blockade is reinforced.
In the US, the average per capita wage rises above China's urban population again. Most urban areas have returned to normal police presence. Unemployment drops down to 12% and some semblance of normalcy begins to return to the US economy.
75 stars are now on the US flag. Only two districts remain "lawless" in Mexico.
Realizing that the US is on an upswing, China decides it must make its move. It invades South Korea and Japan, killing thousands. After one week of attempted peace talks, the US launches into conflict.
Large numbers of the Chinese fleet are vaporized by nuclear weapons, leading to a Chinese retaliation and tactical nuclear assault on Japan and South Korea. Most of South Korea and Japan are protected by US anti-nuke batteries. As a result, only 3 cities in South Korea and 5 cities in Japan are hit by nuclear weapons. Both Seoul and Tokyo are saved.
As a result, both China and the US enter into a full scale nuclear exchange. Chinese and US submarines wreak havoc on their respective enemies. Most "conventional" nuclear missiles are shot down by missile defense systems, and most bombers carrying payloads of hypersonic nukes are destroyed before they are close enough to their target. As a result only a dozen or so conventional nuclear missiles find their mark (out of several hundred launched). Yet, around 50 hypersonic nuclear missiles (carrying smaller payloads) make it to their targets. The west coast of the United States is decimated, along with three cities on the Eastern Seaboard (Boston, Norfolk, and Miami). A smattering of cities and military installations in the south and Midwest are also hit. Hawaii is vaporized.
China actually fares worse than the US, due to their proximity to Japan. While Beijing escapes harm, most of their major coastal cities are vaporized.
The South American countries declare war on the US. Full conflict erupts in Southern Mexico. Within six weeks, US forces have pushed down to the Panama canal. At this point, the South American countries launched their hypersonic nuclear missiles at US targets. A dozen cities in Mexico and Texas are hit, and the Panama canal is vaporized. The US then launches a battery of conventional nuclear weapons at most major cities in South America. Without advanced missile protection, most of these cities are vaporized, and South America is plunged back into the middle ages.
Seeking to make the most of this opportunity, the Muslim EU launches its battery of nuclear weapons (mostly conventional) at targets in the US and Israel. Three of these actually make it to targets in the US, and only one finds its mark in Israel (they have the most advanced missile protection in the world). Israel launches a battery of hypersonic nuclear weapons at major ports and cities in France, Spain, and the Balkans. About 2/3 of these missiles are able to find their mark, vaporizing several cities (including Paris) and virtually annihilating their naval and aviation abilities.
Africa, India, England, Germany, Australia, Italy, and the former Soviet Union escape the conflagration largely unscathed.
As nuclear debris puts a haze in the sky across the planet, the world wonders what lies ahead.