Friday, August 05, 2005

America Shrugged - The Aftermath

"Don't it always seem to go
That you don't know what you've got
'Til it's gone"
Big Yellow Taxi - Joni Mitchell

In the years that followed the great upheaval that accompanied President Smith's America First policies we learn just exactly what a stabilizing force a globally active United States of America was to the world...


New York Times Nov 4 2016

dateline Taipei

In the predawn hours of November 3rd just hours after polls closed on the American presidential election the Peoples Republic of China launched an invasion of Taiwan. In a show of overwhelming force all military bases on the small island nation were destroyed simultaneously. The major airports were seized next where intense battles raged for hours. Thousands of deaths are suspected, but news out of Taipei at this hour is spotty.

A freshly reelected President Smith strongly condemned the action taken by the PRC. Stinging from the criticism that his policy shift away from unconditional defense of Taiwan is directly responsible for the aggressive Chinese action the President defended himself vociferously. "The over riding position of this nation was a 'One China' policy which stood in direct conflict with an American military promise to defend Taiwan. It was contradictory policy and stood to drag America into a war that is essentially an internal Chinese affair. Yes, I would have preferred that a peaceful unification could have been achieved but this is not an American fight."

With that being said the Pentagon has put all American forces in Hawaii and Alaska on high alert...


Wall Street Journal Nov 8 2016

dateline New York

Battered about by the Chinese invasion of Taiwan and the continuing chaos in the energy markets the global economy stands at the threshold of depression. Only China and India are still experiencing growing economies. The United States is hovering around 0% growth for a second consecutive quarter.

Disruptions in the oil producing infrastructure by terrorists in Saudi Arabia and Iraq have sent the energy markets into turmoil. An aggressive Chinese navy patrolling the Persian Gulf has also slowed oil shipments from the region.

The energy markets in disarray is only half of the gloomy economic story. Wildly fluctuating currency values and increased trade tension between the United States and Europe has also caused stock markets around the world into panic selling. With China artificially holding down the value of its currency it continues to undercut American an European efforts at trade reconciliation. The communist government admits that Chinese goods are selling so well that the volume makes up for any currency price differentiation...


New Yorker Magazine Nov 30 2016
(excerpt from an interview with retired economist and professor Paul Krugman)

NYM: Mr. Krugman you have been quoted as saying the Smith administrationion will inadvertently spark a global economic boon with it's declining role in the UN, the World Bank and the IMF. It doesn't look that way now, wouldn't you say?

Krugman: I didn't say that - exactly - I said it COULD send the global economy sky rocketing. I still believe it will. The turmoil in the oil markets and the tension over the Chinese taking of Taiwan has caused a speedbump. Look, this is a global correction we are going through. For the last half of the 20th century we had one nation dictating the global economy with it's wealth and military power. It's going to take a while for the vacuum to be filled with a sensible and fair economic model. I think our friends in the European Union have frankly lead the world in creating an economic model for a more sustainable and equitable society.

NYM: But Professor Krugman Europe's economy is in deep recession. Both France and Germany have had double digit unemployment rates for nearly two decades. Poverty, as well as violent crime is rising, frankly Europe is not looking that good to me.

Krugman: Well, it depends on how and what you're measuring. The unemployment thing is a canard, for heavens sake - generous unemployment benefits are built into the model...


Washington Post Jan 30 2017

dateline Bogota

Leftist insurgents have launched massive attacks on the beleaguered Columbian government. For the second consecutive day Bogota has been under heavy motar fire. Small arms fire can be heard all over the city. After having essentially taken Medellin last month the anti government insurgency called FARC has been emboldened. Flush with Chinese made weapons and Chinese supplied munitions the insurgency has terrorized the country side and is now pushing into the major cities. The Columbian military has been faltering since the United States military ceased joint operations two years ago...


Chicago Sun-Times Dec 2 2017

International Aid Slow to Arrive
dateline Ankara

European officials fear that the death toll from last weeks earthquake in the urban heart of Turkey could exceed 100,000. The magnitude 7.9 earthquake had an epicenter just 15 miles from the capital city of Ankara. The city is in ruins and the government is in shambles.

What is left of the government is complaining that international help has been slow to arrive. Considering that Turkey was finally made a member of the EU just a few years ago they have expected more help from Germany, France and England. Humanitarian aid is arriving from the United States from private relief organizations. The overwhelming issue is infrastructure repairs and security.

Kurdish rebels from the south with help of Iraqi Kurds have taken the opportunity to launch attacks on government installations. Without the buffer of the American military which moved out 2 years ago the south has been a growing caldron of discontent. With no leadership out of Ankara, government troops have been pulling back and conceding territory to the rebels. The UN has been reluctant to commit troops calling this an internal Turkish affair...


New York Times Op/Ed Dec 25 2017
(excerpt from Editor in Chief Emeritus Thomas L. Freidman's Sunday column)

... the Kurdish situation in Turkey has international implications reaching all the way to Washington. It is not a secret that the Kurdish insurgency following in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake is being backed by Iran. It is also no secret that Iran wants to resurrect the Ottoman Empire where Ankara is the crown jewel. With nothing between them and Ankara but a shaky Iraqi government there will be no stopping them. The Europeans in their usual fashion are tied up in internal bickering about what to do about defending the newest member of the EU club.

So, where are the American forces? Well, they are guarding high schools in upstate New York. Staked out around the municipal water supply in Peoria Illinois. Partrolling the desert in Arizona for undocumented workers as they make their way to the vineyards in California. Is this the best use of our highly trained professional army? Do we have any loyalty or responsibility to the Turks who were, after all, our allies during the Cold War? I am not second guessing Mr. Smith's draw down of the US military presence abroad but one has to ask - America First, at what cost...

==================================== Nov 20 2018


After years of bloody battles the Kingdom of Saud is officially dead. The 60 year old Osama bin Laden has returned triumphantly to the nation of his birth in a scene eerily reminiscent of Ayatollah Khomeini's return to Teheran in 1979. In another victory for the Great Caliphate another secular country has fallen to fundimentalist Islamic militants. With the Iraq government in a shambles, the recent overthrow of the governments in Pakistan and Afghanistan and the nearly non existent Turkish government it is just a matter of time before the entire region is under the control religious Islamic rule.

It is unclear what this means to oil production in the former kingdom...


National Post (Canada) Mar 4 2018

Candians uncomfortable with American Troop Presence
dateline Calgary

The RCMP have reported that eco-terrorists have once again halted construction of the controversial Trans-Canadian Pipeline. In a midnight raid they damaged or destroyed the heavy equipment used to clear the path the pipeline is taking through the British Columbian wilderness.

American military personel stationed in the area were caught by surprise by the sheer brazeness and firepower the militant environmentalists employed. Colonel Jamison of the 5th Airborne Division believes the terrorists are receiving aid and comfort from the locals...


Houston Chronicle Oct 12 2018

dateline Panama City

In a provative move the Chinese have denied the US military passage through the Panama Canal. Troops and equipment carriers bound for the Canadian northwest were stopped by Chinese warships before entering the canal. President Smith has waged a formal protest with the Beijing government. The PRC are claiming they are only fulfilling the wishes of their host country. Panama has demanded that the canal be off limits to military ships. "The Panama Canal is to be a conduit for commerce between the east and the west, not a military asset" said Panamanian President Kim Yang...


Wall Street Journal Op/Ed Feb 1 2020
(excerpt from the unsigned editorial)

... with the global economy in the second year of profound depression it's hard to find a ray of sunshine, but we have. Wal Mart has announced it's 100th consecutive quarter of positive growth. Bouyed by the cozy relationship they have built with the only nation on Earth that still has a growing economy Wal Mart is moving all corporate operations to China. The executive offices will remain in Arkansas and New York but with massive cutbacks in both states.

We need to ask ourselves how these two entities continue to defy the economic earthquake that has brought the rest of the civilized world to its knees. The oil shocks have hit every sector of every economy - yet China and Wal Mart roll on...


New York Times Dec 31 2020

Israel retaliates by destroying Mecca; total war feared

"The world has now entered into an era where the use of nuclear weapons is a battle strategy and not, as in the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a final solution."
President John Smith

Tel Aviv lies in ruins with a immediate death toll of a million or more, radiation fallout will kill thousands more. Iran is suspected as the perpetrator. In immediate retailiation the holy shrine of Mecca has been vaporized by a ten megaton nuclear bomb dropped by an Israeli warplane...


And so concludes this exersize in hysterical speculation. But, what would happen to the world if America ceased to be a player on the international stage? America First may sound like a winning strategy for a wiley politician who taps into the frustration everyone has with the position history has placed us in.

I do not think any of these stories are particularly far fetched... Do you?

America Shrugged - an adaptation of an Ayn Rand theme
by Craig Willms


TJ Willms said...

How long have you been working on this one? I'm not quite sure if I've just read some near-future fiction or a white knuckle Horror story! Hell of a post!