The End . . .
When Mehdi Ohmshidi was elected President of the United States, he campaigned on the promise of “fundamentally transforming America,” and that is exactly what he did, carrying out that promise in a way that few could imagine. The result was devastating; a complete breakdown of America's infrastructure, including a total rupture of the power grid, dissolution of the military and law enforcement, the destruction of all commerce, including distribution of food, clothing, and services, as well as the cessation of all newspaper, radio, television, telephone, and Internet access.
Paper money lost its value and hundreds of billions of dollars lay undisturbed in worthless trash piles. Taking advantage of the collapse, Islamic terrorists detonated three nuclear bombs, and the United States ceased to exist.
All across the nation millions of Americans died and their unburied, decaying, and putrefied bodies not only created a horrific landscape, but spread diseases that took millions of more lives. One third of the remaining population became homeless, while nearly as many turned to crime as their only chance for survival. Because of the actions of one self-absorbed, arrogant, and incompetent president who was elected, not on a basis of qualifications, but as an expression of open-mindedness and social experimentation, what had been the most powerful nation in the twenty-first-century world was thrust back into the eighteenth century.
That time before the collapse of the United States, before Ohmshidi became president, was now referred to as the “pre-O” time.
Here and there across the country, groups of Americans formed enclaves of mutual assistance and survival. One such team was headed by army veteran Jake Lantz, who took them to Fort Morgan. The fort is on the Alabama coast at Mobile Point, a little spit of land that separates Mobile Bay from the Gulf of Mexico.
When Jake and his team showed up at the fort there was nothing there but old casements and stone walls. Jake chose Fort Morgan for a number of reasons, number one being the most obvious. It was a fort, and Jake knew that when conditions deteriorated even further in the country, it would spawn armed bands of hooligans to prey on anyone and everyone they thought might have something they could use. As Jake and his group were going to be well off, relatively speaking, he knew they would be a prime target. He knew, also, that the fort would provide them with protection against such groups.
Inside the fort was a rather large area of arable land, probably the only place down on the beach that had real soil, rather than sand. Immediately after arrival, Jake and the team planted the seeds they had brought with them. There was also plenty of fish, and there was a considerable amount of game, from rabbits to possum to alligators.
Once the group reached Fort Morgan, they encountered families who were living in beach houses next to the fort. One was Bob Varney, a retired army Warrant Officer and former helicopter pilot who had done three tours in Vietnam. Bob was also a successful novelist, who, in the pre-O time, before the collapse of the nation and currency, had been doing quite well. Now, however, money was useless, and Bob welcomed the invitation from Jake to join his team.
After detonation of the nuclear bombs and the complete dissolution of the United States, a tremendous power vacuum was created. That vacuum was filled by a fundamentalist Islamic sect that called itself the
, or the Holy Path.
Initially those Americans who had survived the total collapse of the nation under Mehdi Ohmshidi welcomed the
because they began to restore order across the country, punishing thieves and murderers. They also brought in fuel and food, re-established electricity, water, telephone service and the Internet. They even put radio and television broadcasts back on the air. Schools were re-opened and newspapers were printed. The American Islamic Republic of Enlightenment, AIRE, applied for membership in the United Nations, and though they were denied full membership, they were admitted in a nonvoting observer status. They were accorded membership in the OIC, the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.
But there was a very dark side to the AIRE. Churches were burned and their pastors beheaded, women were stoned to death for being raped, a young boy had his arm run over on public television as punishment for stealing a loaf of bread. Youth Confinement and Enlightenment Centers were opened where every youth from six to eighteen was incarcerated so that they could be educated in the way of
. In addition, all Jewish property was confiscated and Jews were incarcerated in “Ultimate Resolution” centers.
Gradually the little group of survivors, they were now calling their operation “Firebase Freedom,” began to attract others. Tom Jack was the first to join them. In the pre-O time Tom had been a SEAL who had survived more covert operations than the law of averages should allow.
Shortly after Tom joined the group they conducted a raid on the gas drilling rigs that were just off the Alabama shore. The raid was successful, the rigs were taken, and not only Fort Morgan, but all of Pleasure Island soon had a near limitless supply of natural gas. Their next operation was to steal a navy destroyer and use it to capture
, a tanker ship that was filled with twenty-one million gallons of refined gasoline.
Another who joined them was Chris Carmack. In the pre-O time, Chris had been an “off the books” agent for the CIA, handling only the most difficult and sensitive cases.
AIRE destroyed the Washington Monument, the World War II monument, the monument to the Korean War, and the Vietnam Memorial Wall, the Lincoln Memorial, the Roosevelt Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial, the Einstein Memorial, and the Holocaust Museum.
In New York Harbor, Liberty Island was now bare, the Statue of Liberty being the first of the heretical symbols to be destroyed. The Gateway Arch in St. Louis had been taken down, and, on Mount Rushmore, the stone-carved faces of all the presidents had been obliterated, all this because these symbols of what had been a free America were deemed to be heretical under the Islamic law of Moqaddas Sirata.
Every artifact in the Smithsonian Institution was destroyed. In addition the books, newspapers, photographs, sound recordings, videos and movies of the Library of Congress were removed from the building and burned. Soon, the only record of what had once been the United States, the greatest nation in history, became nothing but a memory kept alive in the minds and the hearts of those who still held the country dear.
George Gregoire, a man who had been a leading spokesman for conservative America in the pre-O time, was arrested by AIRE, and his public and televised execution was planned. Gregoire was rescued by Chris Carmack and shortly after his rescue, the conservative icon joined the group at Fort Morgan, where he agreed to give a speech to the rest of the nation. They were able to do that because Willie Stark, a member of Jake Lantz's team, was a computer genius who hacked into the satellite which would send the broadcast to every television set in the North American continent.
“Yes, I'm still here, thanks to the bravery of some real heroes. And now, I am among these heroes, men and women who have not given up, men and women who have started a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the principles of personal freedom, self-determination, and sacred honor.
“You need not accept what has happened to you. Be aware that help is on the way. There is a new movement on this continent, building a nation called United Free America. It will be a fully armed and totally self-contained nation of free men and women. We welcome anyone who wants to come join us, to help us attain our ultimate goal.
“What is our ultimate goal?
“First, I want you to see some of my friends here.
The camera turned to show the men and women who were the heart of Firebase Freedom, and consequently, the heart of a United Free America.
“These are the brave men and women who, by their courage, determination, and dedication to the principles of honor and duty, guarantee that we will reach that goal. I will let them tell you now what our real goal is.”
All smiled, and raised their fists as they shouted the motto of the UFA.
“Take Back America!”
The Beginning . . .