I remember how the EndWar began.
It all began with the nuclear war in the Middle East. Israel, Iran, Saudi Arabia and a whole bunch of other countries got nuked; I forget what it was about. It was the worst thing since 9/11. You'd see pictures on the news about how cities were wiped off the face of the map. How nuclear autumn ravaged the land. How millions died over the course of a weekend.
Everyone was horrified. The pictures of the warped survivors, the statues of ash that used to be people and the horror of people that even the great city of Mecca was just... gone. No-one's sure on who fired the first shot, and to be frank, it probably didn't matter. The Middle East had become a land of ghosts. Everyone was horrified, and everyone prayed that such things never happened again. I volunteered for aid work there.
That's why the Missile Shield went up. The S.L.A.M. Shield. The Sea, Land, Air, Missile Shield. A bunch of scientists from both the U.S and a few Euro countries got together and designed a series of gigantic satellites. These would detect the radiological emissions from nuclear missiles and on nuclear bombers, launched from anywhere and then ZAP... It would fire a big laser beam, like in some kind of Bond movie and destroy the bomb right there. The U.S and the E.U both worked on it. The governments at the time were paranoid that they too would get into a nuke conflict and the public on all sides had become super-duper-anti-nuclear. So it had all the funding in the world. When the Shield went online, the presidents from the big countries tested it by firing ICBM's at each other. The Shield worked like a charm. The Missiles barely made it off their pads before the lasers made short work of them. Everyone was jubilant.
After that, our leaders promised an end to nuclear annihilation. They were right about that.
They also promised an Age of Peace.
But that was yet to come.
When Saudi Arabia got nuked, all of the biggest oil suppliers got destroyed. And all of the oil was either burnt, irradiated or in areas to hot to drill. Petrol prices went berserk. I remember having to sell my car and take a bike to work, so I was lucky, but that's peanuts compared to what people all over the world were going through. Oil was the life blood of civilisation in those days. Transportation, plastics, travel, manufacturing, power, you name it, it probably needed oil. People started to get desperate. As oil started to get rare, people started to fight over it. Small nations fought and disintegrated into failed states.
After Saudi Arabia was destroyed, the world's Number One Oil Supplier was Mother Russia. Overnight their economy sky rocketed. Everyone was willing to pay the rising prices for oil, so they became very rich indeed. They spent the money getting their shit together after over a decade of chaos, spending it on great schemes and new industries. They also spent that money on their army. They modernised it to rival that of the U.S and Europe in terms of technology, and when they finally sorted out the issues of corruption and hazing in their army, they were one of the most powerful militaries in the world again. It even had the resources to re-assimilate the failed ex-Soviet nations, like the Ukraine and the Baltic's, and put up their own SLAMS system.
Meanwhile in Europe, things were getting desperate. Nations started to bicker with each other, until they finally realised what needed to be done. Three years after the nukes in the Mid East dropped, the nations of Europe banded together into one super nation. All of the E.U countries, with the exception of Britain, Switzerland and a few other now failed nations formed into the European Federation. This was one, big nation united under a single government and military, which had a GNP and armed strength that rivalled and in some cases, exceeded that of the U.S, Russia and China. Everyone on the news talked about it as 'the new E.U.' but there was a lot of separatist terrorism inside. Even that was quieted after what happened later. Soon after that, Britain and Ireland had to unite simply to make ends meet into the 'New Commonwealth'.
In China, things were starting to become unglued. As the Internet became more and more powerful, the Chinese started to become more aware of what was going on in the world. They started to be more aware of their own nation. They started to know the words 'Tiananmen Square' and the dark side of the government. The Politburo cracked down on the Internet, but they didn't count on the Internet hearing the reports of a new disease starting up in China.
Then in America, they started to get paranoid. NATO had become undone with the forming of the E.F, and with their old adversaries becoming as powerful as they were, they realised that they weren't the big fish in the pond anymore. With their own supply of oil blown up in the ashes of the nukes, they took advantage of the chaos in South America, especially Venezuela, and 'intervened' on behalf of the people and gave them order again, in exchange for oil. But that still wasn't enough. Apart from the normal rearmament, they came up with the so-called 'Freedom Star': The world's first manned, military space platform. Ostensibly, it was a normal science and observation platform, but everyone knew that it had the ability to deploy a company of Spec-Ops soldiers anywhere in the world within 90 minutes. There was much anger at it, and not just from the peace activists. The E.F went from being America's friend to its cold rival, since some thought that it could be used to neutralise SLAMS satellites.
Yep... things were getting pretty heated. But then, it gets even better! As the last modules for Freedom Star were about to go up, a terrorist group that nobody's ever heard about made simultaneous attacks on the four superpowers various installations, like the Space Centre at Cape Canaveral, or the Three Gorges Dam in China. These guys came in with pretty damn good military firepower; tanks, attack choppers and whatnot, yet they failed to do any real damage to any of the targets. Bunch of noobs... you give them some flash new toys to play around with and suddenly they think they're the kings of the world. I think they were called the 'Forgotten Army'... heh... can't even remember who they were...
But anyway... everyone got paranoid after that mess. All of the mega powers made their own investigations and started to suspect each other for supplying the terrorists with the hardware. Then, about a couple of months after the attacks, the Euros caught an American black-ops team trying to kidnap their defence minister at a base in Copenhagen at the time. Apparently, the Yanks had found 'undeniable proof' that the Federation were the ones who supplied the Forgotten Army. It was one great big mess. People were killed; everyone was convinced that war was going to break out between the countries. The black-ops team was later allowed to leave without the Defence Minister and captives were later released. The E.F and the U.S then met in London to discuss peace talks.
By then the Freedom Star was nearly complete. I remember watching the thing on television that night back home. The big new shuttlecraft that carries the thing up had just gotten into orbit. Then it happened.
As it was rising, a big laser suddenly fired, and shot the space ship as it was rising. The fuel tanks were set alight, and before anyone realised what was happening, the whole ship ignited in a raging volcano of fire and metal. Everyone was screaming, panicking... Now the whole thing is up there along with Pearl Harbour and such.
We found out that apparently, an E.F Missile Shield satellite thought that space shuttle was some kind of ICBM taking off, so it zapped it right there. Everyone smelled a rat, as the shuttle had no detectable radiation emissions. About two days after it happened, the U.S had declared war on Europe. I remember watching the announcement when I was at work. The boss put the T.V out for all of us.
The End had begun.
At first there was fighting in Portugal and Spain under a U.S invasion, but Europe's own Special Forces outfit: The European Federation Enforcer Corps, proved to be plenty capable of raiding the U.S. At first, Russia and China were detached from the conflict and weren't involved yet. That changed when Russia waded in, invading Poland, claiming to 'assist the American allies in the crusade against the European aggressors.' Of course everyone knew that it was complete bullshit. The Americans knew that too. They knew that the Russians were just trying to reform the old soviet bloc, so they tried to limit the Russkie's capabilities with some covert strikes. Those got found out as well, so before you knew it, Russia had also declared war on the U.S, and people were fighting a three way war.
The war went on. In China, something devastating started up. Some new super virus had started to show up. It was super deadly and super contagious, so people started to die in their droves there too. It spread over into India, and killed even more people there as well. They say that over a billion people died because of it. In China, things started to get unstuck. People were dying in their droves and the army was having a hard time keeping order, because all of the soldiers were dying too. The people were getting more frustrated with every passing month. Discontent grew. Then, about four years after the war started, The Three Gorges Dam, with no one to look after it, crumbled and burst. Ten trillion gallons of water, carrying bits and pieces of debris, houses, mud, trees, cars and chunks of the dam itself flooded through, a great dragon, devouring everything. Even now, they are still finding bodies. The Politburo called it an 'unforeseen tragedy'. Assholes... It was such bullshit when everyone knew that the dam was built on an active fault line, and that cracks were seen when the dam was completed. Then a reporter broke the ugly truth about the Plague: it was actually an illegal Chinese bio weapon that had gotten out of control when they were 'testing' it on a remote village. After that, the Chinese people had enough. So began the Chinese Civil War.
In Africa, many of the nations started to disintegrate into old tribal warfare... albeit one with AK's and guns. It was anarchy out there. Only a few countries, chief of them being South Africa, kept stable. Eventually it became necessary for the few stable countries band together and to assimilate the weaker ones to stop the brigands, raiders and all of the pissant warlords from raiding their countries. Thus the Coalition of Africa was born.
Many people had wished that the war would come to an end in a few months. They were wrong. The war kept going on. People kept killing, people kept dying. Russia invaded Alaska. Europe invaded America. Fronts just kept changing. The nations started to crack down on any protest against the war, there were great sea battles fought, blowing up ships, rationing became the norm in practically every country. The arms manufacturers were making billions and laughing their asses off... that is, until America, Europe and Russia alike forcibly nationalised the factories. Special Forces from all sides conducted raids against their respective enemies. Great national monuments, like the Statue of Liberty were destroyed. And on top of this, the Plague spread to other countries, necessitating martial law. It was brutal. I can only thank god that I lived in Canada and New Zealand at the time.
Oil prices kept going up. It was becoming impossible to find decent petrol anywhere. Then an interesting thing came up during the war. It turned out, it was a rogue Russian general who funded the Forgotten Army, and instigated the attacks. He then planted the 'undeniable evidence' that the Euro's were behind it all and then had the SLAMS shield satellites hacked to destroy the Freedom Star lifter. And do you know what happened?
The Federation, America and Russia kept on fighting. Because the war had grown to be more than who started it all. Everyone just wanted to be the one on top of the pile now. The war seemed to have no end.
Ten years the war went on. Ten long years of conflict, death and destruction. In China, the Politburo was overthrown, and a new democratic government took force. Japan saw conflict when various countries tried to set their 'interests' on it. It started to remilitarize, in order to keep out the pirates coming from various failed states. North and South Korea got into skirmishes after the Plague hit the North. Africa was being largely united under a now rich A.C. WMD's were fired at the Earth resulting in something not seen since Stalingrad. Things started to look pretty bad. People started to stop calling this World War Three and start calling it 'The EndWar'.
Yeah... things were looking pretty bad.
Then suddenly, the second coming of Christ came, in the form of Fusion Power. Some bright sparks finally managed to create it. It was clean, unlimited and huge nuclear power.
When it came into being, made by some British inventors, people wanted an end to the war. Their families and friends were dead. Their countries had turned into ash pits. No one wanted to fight anymore, when there was nothing left to fight for. People were tired. Twelve years after the war began; The Treaty of London formally ended the EndWar. They say nearly a billion people died in the war.
After the war the powers were changed. America had become, and still is a martial state. Liberty, Freedom and Justice had become nothing but meaningless buzzwords that politicians threw around in their speeches. It's just sad really. Europe had managed to survive, and its people have managed to all call themselves: 'Europeans' although they're still cold to the others. Russia was smart enough to have some non-oil related industries set up. The oil was already running out you know. At least their government has become tough, but democratic.
Nowadays... I don't know what the future will bring. The world has sort of become this... cyberpunk world, where all of the original mega powers do all of these black operations against each other, yet do no more wars. The places with the highest levels of happiness per capita are New Zealand, Canada, Australia and the African Coalition. New technologies, once developed for war, like exo-suits and bio-mechanical body parts now serve peaceful purposes. There's talk of Japan helping out Korea with pushing back the North, and the Plague is starting to fade away. Birth rates are dropping, so at least over-population won't be a problem.
As an aid worker, now working for the reformed U.N, I still wonder what the future holds for us.
What kind of world will our children live in?
What will become of them?
At least the Age of the EndWar is over.