United States Armed Forces
The United States Armed Forces were the federal military forces of the United States of America, consisting of five branches: The Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, and the Coast Guard. Though the civilian government formerly exercised control over the military, the Resource Wars combined with the deteriorating economic situation led to the erosion of civilian authority and gradual transition of a federal republic into a military junta, with the President of the United States exercising dictatorial control over the state.
Following the collapse of the United States in the Great War, surviving USAF military units and servicemen would become a crucial influence on the United States, founding the Brotherhood of Steel, the Enclave, Junktown, or otherwise influencing entire communities.
- 1 History
- 2 Organization
- 3 Technology
- 4 Gallery
- 5 See also
- 6 References
History[edit | edit source]
- Main article: Pre-Divergence military history of the United States
The United States military was a crucial tool of the United States foreign policy from the beginning and the formation of the Continental Army. Throughout the 20th century, they participated in numerous wars, including the First World War and the Second World War. The Armed Forces have also worked towards the militarization of space, with the first tentative steps being taken during the Virgo II lunar landing. The first steps were taken with the pioneering flight of Defiance 7 on May 5, 1961, when Captain Carl Bell became the first human in space. However, the claim was widely disputed by the Soviet Union and China. By the end of the decade, the United States had achieved victory in the space race, as the Virgo II lunar lander touched down on the surface of Earth's moon on July 16, 1969. Valiant 11 mission members, Captain Richard Wade, Captain Mark Garris, and Captain Michael Hagen became the first humans to walk on the surface of another celestial body - with weapons drawn. With the gradual exhaustion of resources, the space exploration program would peter out by 2034, when the remaining space exploration vehicles like the Delta IX were converted to military ordnance - foreshadowing the eventual fate of the American state.
The Resource Wars[edit | edit source]
An increasingly aggressive foreign policy resulted in the Armed Forces being increasingly used to influence foreign entities. One of the first major examples of this 2051, when the United States began exerting pressure on Mexico to protect their economic interests there, primarily the crude oil supply. The U.S. deliberately destabilized the country through economic pressure, paving the way for a military invasion. American units seized oil refineries and infrastructure to ensure the flow of crude oil did not cease. However, it did little to avert the crisis. As the Texan oil fields ran dry, their withering husks revealed to the American public just how deep the resource and energy crisis was, in a landmark 2052 television documentary. Not long afterwards, rising oil prices worldwide bankrupted smaller nations and lead to the European Commonwealth declaring war on the Middle East; the United States was severely affected by the skyrocketing prices of oil. The dissolution of the United Nations in July ensured that no international body would mediate between nations, allowing for unrestricted use of military force..
Nuclear exchanges in the Middle East and the devastating Euro-Middle Eastern War, coupled with the New Plague reaping a deadly harvest caused the government to initiate Project Safehouse in 2054. Vault-Tec Industries won the contract to construct massive nuclear shelters for the population, becoming a critical defense contractor. Amidst an increasingly chaotic and violent international situation, the United States began to militarize. One of the first major projects emerged in 2059, as the Anchorage Front Line was established in Alaska to protect the state's natural resources and escalating tensions with Canada, as the United States military units demanded permission to guard the Trans-Alaskan Pipeline by stationing troops on Canadian soil.
The Sino-American War[edit | edit source]
- See also: Power armor
A year later, in 2060, available fuel reserves were on the brink of depletion worldwide. Traffic on the streets died as fuel became too valuable to waste on cars. The automotive industry desperately tried to come up with a solution to the problem, but electric and early fusion cars were too little, too late to solve the needs of society. The problem was further emphasized by the collapse of the European Commonwealth and the Middle East oil powers, as the oil fields were exhausted. Together with a deteriorating economy and worsening social climate, the United States began to crack. The federal government used the increasing national paranoia to try and control the situation, by discouraging assemblies, fueling the anti-communist sentiment, and encouraging reporting subversive elements. The Vigilant Citizen's Hotline was even established to allowed hysterical citizens to report neighbors to the government for any behavior that could be construed as in support of communism. The Third Red Scare is a response to the increased hostility of the People's Republic of China and its operations on American soil.
The military was particularly affected by the fuel shortages, as its vehicle fleets, especially tanks, became crippled by a lack of fuel. In response, the United States Armed Forces initiated a research program seeking to develop power armor in 2065. Research, development, and prototyping pave the way for future advances in military, construction, and most importantly, cold fusion technology. The military would continue research in other areas continues as well, including more powerful nuclear weapons.
The breakthroughs in technology and possession of oil reserves would result in the United States clashing with the People's Republic of China. As the economy of the communist state was dependent to a much greater degree on fossil fuels than that of the U.S., China found itself on the border of collapse in spring of 2066, with oil fields finally drying up globally. With the United States unwilling to export its own reserves of crude oil, China became more aggressive in its negotiations. This resulted in the July 24 declaration by the U.S. president that the last known supply of petroleum will be used exclusively by the U.S. and the U.S. will not sell or trade any oil to outside parties. Adding further insult was the first crude fusion cell developed for the power armor project, revealed to the public in summer of 2066.
Desperate to avoid collapse, China launched an invasion of Alaska to seize its natural resources. This daring, trans-Pacific military operation began the Sino-American War, the last war the United States would ever fight. It also inadvertently triggers the gradual annexation of Canada, as the United States forces it to grant right of passage to American military units on the way to the Alaskan theater. As China is fully committed to the Alaskan operation, United States forces find themselves outmatched and pushed back. The T-45 power armor is rapidly prototyped and pressed into production to prevent Chinese tanks and infantry from overrunning Alaska. The first units prove to be incredibly effective in defense, but somewhat lacking in offensive capabilities. As the Chinese military lost the initiative, the situation rapidly deteriorated into trench warfare as neither side was capable of breaking the stalemate and forcing peace terms on the enemy.
The war consumed increasing amounts of resource, materiel, and manpower, straining the ailing American economy. To counteract this, the United States military began to liberally exploit Canadian resources. Protests from Ottawa are ignored as Canada became little more than a colony of the United States. Canadian riots and protests eventually culminated in a sabotage attempt on an oil pipeline in 2072. The United States military used the incident as pretext to invade Canada outright and begin annexation. On the domestic front, the United States Army contracted RobCo Industries and General Atomics International to collaborate on an unprecedented joint project: The creation of the most powerful combat robot in the history of warfare, to liberate Anchorage, Alaska from Chinese occupation in a display of power meant to demoralize the enemy and force them into submission. The project was meant to serve both military and propaganda needs. The former dictated the capacity, the latter the design: In the words of General Constantine Chase, initiator of the project, Liberty Prime was to embody the American military: A walking, talking, nuke-tossing hero reminding enemies of the U.S. that they picked a fight with a global super power. Confident that the project would soon yield result, General Chase publicly confirmed in June 2072 that the U.S. Army was working with General Atomics and RobCo to create a superweapon meant to establish dominance of the United States on the Alaskan front.
Furthermore, the aggressive use of biological weapons by the Chinese led the government to order West Tek to develop a Pan-Immunity Virion on September 15, 2073. The research would eventually evolve into the Forced Evolution Virus project. Since West Tek was effectively nationalized two years prior (put under military command), the scientists had no other choice but to obey their military masters.
One of the turning points of the War came in 2074, as despite claims of fighting a defensive war, American infantry and mechanized divisions landed in Asia, in a counter-invasion of Chinese mainland. In the Yangtze Campaign, U.S. Marines rapidly overran Shanghai and Nanjing, securing a major port for bringing in troops and materiel. The economy was stretched to the breaking point as America found itself fighting a war on three fronts: Canada, Alaska, and mainland China. Neither side was willing to yield, despite eight years of constant warfare, and ambitious flanking maneuvers such as the Gobi Campaign.
By 2076, the war had raged for a decade. Both China and the United States teetered on the brink of collapse. In January, a permanent garrison was installed at West Tek, to ensure that the Forced Evolution Virus project remained safe from international espionage, as it entered a new stage of experimentation on dogs and chimpanzees. By the end of the month, the annexation of Canada was completed. Its provinces are put under martial law - all protesters and rioters are shot on sight. Atrocities committed in the name of the Union make their way stateside, fermenting anti-governmental sentiment.
However heinous the annexation, the military gained an advantage to offset the problems with economic strain. The introduction of the T-51 power armor in June helped tip the scales in favor of the U.S. military. The next generation power armor resolved problems existing in older generations of armor. Mechanized cavalry units outfitted with the T-51bs were sent to the Alaskan and Chinese fronts, carving a swath through Communist forces. The Chinese economy crumbled under the onslaught and supply lines from nations annexed by the Beijing regime started falling apart. However, the American regime did not fare any better. In August, food and energy riots start in urban centers across the United States. A state of emergency and eventually martial law was declared, with U.S. military forces being deployed on the domestic front to fight their own countrymen. The United States became, effectively, a military junta.
The Collapse of America[edit | edit source]
2077 began on a high note, as the Anchorage Reclamation ended with a decisive American victory on January 10, following a final offensive spearheaded by T-51 power armor units adapted to the cold environment. Despite the embarrassment of the Liberty Prime project, which failed to produce a working weapon for use in Anchorage, General Constantine Chase became a national hero for his leadership in the first stages of the operation. The Anchorage War Memorial was hastily erected on FDR Island to commemorate the efforts and sacrifices of American soldiers on the Alaskan front, basing on an iconic photograph taken in Anchorage.
The victory in Alaska heralded bad news for American and Canadian citizens, as the military junta in control of the United States deployed mechanized cavalry units to Canada and the United States. Veterans of the Chinese and Alaskan fronts found themselves fighting their own countrymen, quelling riots and enforcing the national quarantine. Mounting civilian casualties snapped the loyalty of soldiers and desertions started to occur. The situation was worsened when FEV research leaked to the public after the project was transferred to the Mariposa Military Base for human trials. The American public and surviving governments worldwide were outraged by this revelation. Many speculated that the American government was responsible for engineering the New Plague, fueling paranoia and unrest.
The collapse of the Alaskan front sent the Chinese reeling as their supply lines broke down completely. Faced with a rapidly disintegrating nation and China backed into a corner, the oligarchs ruling the United State retreated to remote locations around the globe, expecting a last-ditch nuclear strike from China at any moment. The oil rig was claimed by the president and key members of the junta, becoming the foundation of the future Enclave. Bases across the United States were sealed and troops redeployed to feed more men into the meat grinder that the Chinese front became and sustain the American offensive.
By October, the United States was virtually leaderless, continuing on simply due through inertia. When the U.S. Army security detail at Mariposa discovered the FEV experiments conducted on their comrades in arms – the very men arrested for refusing to fight their own countrymen – they rebel. However, even as Captain John Maxson declared them in full desertion from the Army and broke all ties with the United States, there is no response – the chain of command ceased to exist.
Nuclear weapons were launched on October 23, 2077. Vaults are sealed as the air raid sirens blare for the last time. Within two hours, the United States ceased to exist as a nation, its cities vaporized in nuclear fireballs. Abandoned by their leaders, the survivors began rebuilding on their own, while the oligarchs that controlled the country for so long ignored the suffering in their retreats. Those on the oil rig form the Enclave, claiming to be the government of the United States, but not lifting a finger to help.
Legacy[edit | edit source]
Although the United States Armed Forces ceased to exist alongside the nation they formally served (and actually controlled), they would continue to influence its history directly and indirectly. The most obvious examples is military hardware present in the wasteland, ranging from humble infantry equipment to the high tech T-51 power armor and military robots. More subtle examples include:
- The Brotherhood of Steel formed by Roger Maxson, which became an important player in wasteland politics.
- The Enclave, formed by the descendants of the military-industrial complex that ruled America, which almost managed to commit total global genocide.
- Junktown, founded by a former U.S. Army serviceman.
- The Unity, which came into existence as an unintended result of the FEV research project.
Organization[edit | edit source]
The Armed Forces consisted of five distinct branches. Related
Army[edit | edit source]
The United States Army was one of the principal branches involved in fighting on the Alaskan front and appears to have been the principal operator of power armor. It was the Army that led the decisive push into Anchorage in 2077, maintained the nuclear forces responsible for operating the United States arsenal of nuclear weapons, The Army military police was also involved in carrying out Executive Order 99066, the internment of Chinese and Chinese-American persons in concentration camps.
Marine Corps[edit | edit source]
The United States Marine Corps provided limited assistance to the Army during the Anchorage Reclamation, but were primarily responsible for invading the Chinese mainland at Shanghai and Nanjing, due to their specialization in power projection from the sea. Marines were also responsible for carrying out internment operations against aforementioned Chinese and Chinese-American persons, as well as operating the concentration camps they were interned at.
[edit | edit source]
The United States Navy is known to have supported U.S. military operations during the Anchorage Reclamation (leading to the unfortunate incident between USS Ebon Atoll and USS Interference) and was likely responsible for organizing the counter-invasion of the Chinese mainland. Naval fighters were responsible for coastal patrols and defense.
Air Force[edit | edit source]
The Air Force was responsible for ensuring dominance in the air and operated strategic bombing wings. Their military bases continue to play a role in the wasteland, including the Adams Air Force Base (headquarters of the Enclave in the 23rd century) and the Nellis Air Force Base (home to the Boomers in the 23rd century). Air Force formations that formed a part of the Air Force include 15th and Tenth Air Forces, as well as the 827th and 29th Bomb Squadrons.
Coast Guard[edit | edit source]
Related services[edit | edit source]
National Guard[edit | edit source]
The National Guard was a reserve branch of the Army and primarily served as a domestic defense and disaster relief force during peacetime. However, they could be and often were deployed abroad as front-line troops in wartime.
Another checkpoint near Northwest Seneca Station, set up to bar civilians from entering a radiation cleanup area after the war
Technology[edit | edit source]
By 2077 and the Great War, the United States military was the most powerful military in the world, thanks to its overwhelming technological superiority. T-60 power armor, T-51 and their older sibling, the T-45, guaranteed a qualitative advantage over any foe, thanks to their superb protection and ability to carry heavy weapons into combat, including rotary cannons usually mounted on gunships or fighters, and crew-served weapons like anti-tank missile launchers. They were essentially mobile firing positions, filling a similar (but not identical) niche as tanks. Power armor units were usually issued to mechanized cavalry formations operating on critical fronts, although significant numbers were issued to special purpose units assigned to domestic security, such as at the Mariposa Military Base.
Energy weapons were another example of the United States enjoying technological superiority over any potential foe. While Germany has developed infantry fielded railguns in the form of the M72 Gauss rifle and the PPK-12 Gauss pistol (which the United States fielded as well), the United States Armed Forces were entering a stage where laser and plasma weapons were entering limited deployment. While many units continued to be developed and tested, production models like the Wattz 2000 were deployed with units serving in China alongside cutting-edge third generation combat armor. The weapons have not yet managed to eclipse conventional armaments, but provided a significant edge to United States forces, thanks to the interchangeability of power cells: A micro-fusion cell could power anything from a close-range scattergun to a high-precision long-range laser marksman's rifle.
Outside power armor and energy weapons, the Armed Forces deployed advanced, reliable technologies. The standard combat uniform of the military was combat armor, manufactured from advanced defensive polymers, providing excellent protection. Even the first generation, where the armor was manufactured as individual plates affixed to a uniform, was a great combat uniform and was used by light infantry formation well into 2077, with more advanced second and third generation suits reserved for use in China or sensitive areas on the domestic front. Weapons tended to be more reliable than advanced, with the rugged, reliable M199, and R91 assault rifles, the humble service rifle and/or the MP9 10mm submachine gun being the perfect examples of the philosophy. Although advanced conventional designs (such as bullpup designs and caseless ammunition) were certainly deployed and in number.
Robotics played an important role in Armed Forces operations. Sentry bots, Mister Gutsy, and Robobrains were perfected and were routinely used in operations both within and without United States (though some, like Mister Gutsy, weren't ready for deployment until 2077). While the resource crisis has grounded many vehicles, aircraft remained operational in at least a limited capacity. Fighter jets of the United States Navy were patrolling the coastline, while the new Vertibird tiltrotor gunship/transport aircraft was undergoing development and entered limited service by 2077, most notably in the Commonwealth (Massachusetts), with full-scale adoption planned for 2083. Though they can hardly be considered aircraft, hundreds of orbital micronuclear platforms were also placed in orbit around Earth, to provide tactical fire support for military forces or defend the home front if need be.
Gallery[edit | edit source]
Insignia[edit | edit source]
Art and propaganda[edit | edit source]
Hopeville missile base propaganda posters
United States mainland[edit | edit source]
Anchorage Reclamation[edit | edit source]
General Constantine Chase
See also[edit | edit source]