The End Of America Expanded:
A somewhat ASB request from SD80MACfan for a scenario based on a short story written by him sd80macfan.deviantart.com/art/…. In this world, in order to combat the increasingly intolerable national debt, the government of the United States proposed a radical solution that they believed would alleviate the worst of the debt. They planned to partition the United States of America, wiping the national debt away and hopefully dividing the sum total the US owed between the new nations that would emerge.
Or so that was the official story. The actual reason behind the partition was far more insidious yet convoluted. Certain elements of the United States wished to build a nation, or failing that an organisation, that covered the entirety of the North American Continent. They planned to reduce the opposition by disbanding the United States and dividing it into 16 separate nations that would, presumably, be easier to direct. The USA was successfully divided in a fairly efficient manner by agglomerating states into 16 separate entities that were nominally united through a political and economic union known as the United Nations of America. This UNA would presumably go on to take control of the USA' neighbours and bring them into the fold. Plans were already being made for Canada when disaster struck.
The new constituent nations of the UNA had barely solidified and elections had just taken place when the new government of Utah now officially the Republic of Deseret refused to enter the UNA. A conservative Mormon party had risen to power in the nation and they had voted to instead follow a foreign policy of isolation, abstaining from any of the agreements made concerning the UNA.
Things immediately fell apart from there as political groups across the UNA rose up to protest the formation of the new decentralised entity. Pro-Union groups supported the reformation of the federal government, secessionists wanted their individual states to be independent of the new nations that had been formed and extremists everywhere of both sides of the spectrum tried to turn their portions of the former United States into their own ideological utopia.
It wasn't long before the chaos spread elsewhere. The delicate balance the UNA had set up which was supposed to maintain the economic and military strength of the former USA collapsed completely. With it went the global economy.
Economic depression engulfed the world with the end of the Global Stock Exchange and the disintegration of the American hegemony that had defined the 21st Century to this point. Nations who had been especially dependant on the US for their economies took it the hardest. China almost immediately fell into anarchy as their rising economy almost vanished. Nations in Europe were wracked by separatist movements of their own, seeing the US' disappearance as an opportunity and the new political divisions as an example. Russia was hit by similar problems but responded in far more draconian ways to the problem. It took decades for the world to recover from the fall of the United States but, eventually, a new status quo emerged and stabilised itself.
By 2040 things have quieted down in North America. The United States is long gone and the new nations that were born from it have stabilised themselves. The breakup of the UNA is also known as the 2nd American Civil War by many.
New England is one of the more economically successful nations in North America having reopened trade links with most of the other nations in the Atlantic. New England is infamously unscrupulous about who they trade with, more concerned with maintaining the recovered standards of living they once again enjoy than the ethics of their trading partners. One of their more expansionist presidents, seeking to stabilise his position for the next elections also succeeded in annexing much of Eastern Canada before Quebec could grab them. The now decentralised nature of New England has left their control over some territories, especially the Canadian ones, highly technical, several are even members of the Commonwealth.
The New Confederacy has come through in decent shape, has not reintroduced slavery or discrimination against coloured people, contrary to everyone's apparent expectations, and weathered the conflicts of the 2nd Civil War and subsequent unrest. However the increase in the frequency of hurricanes has caused problems as costs for defences and reconstruction are becoming horrendous, straining the already fragile Confederate economy.
Most of these American nations still suffer from extreme unrest, especially from Unionists which are still fighting, though now vainly, for the reunification of the nation. Canadian nationalists, many backed by the New Federation of Canada, are also a thorn in the sides of New England and Cascadia. Much of the former USA still trade with one another and the borders of several of these new nations are rather relaxed, they even accept each others currency (still the dollar in their cases but with different people's faces on them).The spirit of the proposed UNA survives in this. However these particular nations are also in agreement over the condemnation of such things like Utah's increasingly authoritarian government and the openly expansionist actions taken by the Texans.
South America suffered as the rest of the world did but they have managed to come into their own, the collapse of the US and China made them rather enticing trading partners in the early years of 2nd Civil War. After years of slowed but continuous development nations such as Brazil and Argentina are now considered 1st World, even if only by this world's slightly lower standards.
Brazil has reached international notoriety, mostly for agricultural exports, but is also now regarded as a major great power. They have modernised fully and are in fact a very technologically and socially progressive nation, especially with sustainable technology and lifestyles. Brazil boasts some of the most elaborate recycling systems in the world which they mostly use to alleviate resource imports but also, sometimes, to supplement exports as well. The rise in living standards and their relatively liberal society have also led to a somewhat small but steady flow of immigrants into their nation from other areas. Despite some regions initial attempts at separatism Brazil remains whole and stable but also has an expanded army and police force because of the, admittedly, minor unrest of the time. The multi-polar political situation of the world also prompted them to increase their armed forces as few of the other hegemons looked particularly agreeable and those that did were not strong enough to protect their interests.
After the rise of the secessionists in the Americas many minority groups in Europe began to demand their own independent nations. Unfortunately it was this, along with the economic troubles of the 2010s and 2020s that also led to the rise of various popular right wing political groups. As politics became more polarised in Europe and living standards fell the EU strained and then split. The fall of America led to paranoia gripping much of the continent, the implosion of the Middle East also didn't help matters and the waves of Muslim refugees and the spread of chaos into the Balkans finally led to a resurgence in right wing politics. The backlash against Muslims caused even more divisions and the nations of the EU coalesced into new smaller political blocs. Mitteleuropa is the less xenophobic of the blocs, despite their still poor treatment of Muslim immigrants, and are the more prosperous and liberal compared to the Latin League.
Russia suffered rather horrendous internal unrest as their own secessionists emerged and tried to break their oblasts off from the Russian Federation. The response from the government was rather draconian and it took a long time for order to be restored. The economic collapse caused further problems but Russia weathered it better than most, enacting only a minor degree of expanded militarism. However the world they found themselves in after things had settled down a little was very different from before and ripe for exploitation.
Russia has expanded somewhat, swallowing territory from Ukraine and Belarus whilst installing sympathetic or puppet governments in other states. Though still rather militant and authoritarian, Russia is not fascist and nowhere near the same levels of unpleasantness as China. They still export natural gas and oil but reserves are running dry now despite the economic trouble reducing demand from other nations. The Russian economy has expanded even if higher technology is still rather difficult for them, by exploring more advanced forms of extracting and refining their natural resources. A religious revival has been ongoing for years now and the government have capitalised on it to gain support for themselves. The government is oligarchic with fixed elections, opposition (who aren't dummy parties) sometimes being arrested and the victors of every election decided beforehand. Industrialists and members of the lead party dominate the government but ever since the collapse of the USA military leaders and even some clergymen now have their place in the government power structure.
Africa suffered tremendously from the collapse of American hegemony and the years of economic turmoil. All foreign aid and most of the investment disappeared in those years and the fragile stability in many African nations fell apart. Secessionists also appeared in this time and the rise and fall of Radical Islam in North Africa served to destabilise things even further. A form of faux stability now exists in Africa but it is mostly upheld by warlords and in other cases is unbelievably fragile. The great powers have begun to subvert the control of the indigenous governments, establishing colonies by taking over things like law enforcement and most industries.
America pulled out of the Middle East and with no more interference from foreign powers and the economic collapse exacerbating existing political and social tensions, radical Islam swept through West Asia and North Africa. For a time nearly every nation in these regions was under the rule of some kind of theocratic government. However as the depression continued and the new governments failed to bring prosperity and stability to the region the people began to become restless. Finally a costly war with Israel that shattered many nations bordering them led to the toppling of one radical Islamic government after another until they were all gone. Warlord states and rickety democracies now dominate the area, struggling to maintain order whilst the great powers begin to spread their influence into the area once again.
India came through the struggle, though barely, as political unrest swept through the nation. Areas did try to secede but were crushed after several lengthy campaigns that led to a massive militarisation effort. The collapse of Pakistan led to things escalating further. India is now a belligerent nationalist state that seems intent on becoming a power on the world stage. The militarisation did expand industries that had taken a hit from the global economic downturn but the struggle to maintain this development almost led to revolution. Though still a bit authoritarian India his risen over the decades to become a major economic power and competes with China and the Commonwealth for influence in the Indian Ocean.
China was hit very hard by the collapse of the USA and the erasure of the debt America owed them. Much of the economy disappeared almost overnight, the turmoil in North America and the economic downturn that swept the globe after that made things worse and eventually China fell into anarchy as the drastically expanded populations of unemployed and destitute rioted and even, in some places, rose up in revolt. Things only settled down after martial law was imposed and the army arrived to brutally suppress the riots, often with deadly force.
Since then China has remained under martial law, the Politburo now largely subverted by the army. The new regime, like before, still maintains the superficial vestiges of Communism but is now largely capitalist. The army and several new prominent industrialists, many of whom took advantage of the chaos to establish monopolies over entire regions, have a complex relationship. Life in China is authoritarian and stratified, the laws are draconian and brutally enforced and there is a constant paranoid search for any possible dissidents. Muslim unrest is still commonplace in Western China along with those who now resist the totalitarian regime. There was a brief period of expansionism where China subverted rule in several nations. They now have a Sinosphere that is little more than a system of puppets dominated by the Chinese military and the industrialists that control the economies of these nations.
With the USA gone and China returning to dangerous totalitarianism Australia needed a means of finding security. They convinced New Zealand and Papua New Guinea to join them in a new defence union. It was later, when Canada collapsed and Europe divided that they even coaxed Britain to join them, mostly in order to gain access to a nuclear arsenal for defensive purposes. Led by Australia the new Commonwealth of Nations is a bloc supposedly devoted to somewhat conservative social democracy. They are rather militant and paranoid due to their member states' close proximities to China and the Latin League but all of them are still assuredly democratic. Currently there are plans to convince more of North America to join and to build up bigger development initiatives in their African dependencies.
Despite several setbacks technology has continued to advance. Consumerism has largely disappeared and a number of companies are now focusing on sustainability. Products are designed to last longer but that doesn't stop them making new models or designs to sell to people in quantity. The internet has survived though a lot more of the world now blocks or censors it and continues to provide the world with information. Climate change has also caused trouble for the world, altering weather patterns and spreading drought into many areas. Genetically engineered crop plants are now rather popular, especially in Australia and have even been modified to have palatable flavour and had the horrible side effects removed. New synthetics are being explored by several nations in order to alleviate demand on certain resources.
Nuclear weapons have become more widespread than before and every major power bloc now has a nuclear arsenal. Things have become comfortable but the stability is fragile. Many of these new powers are openly expansionist and the new Scramble for Africa may yet start another war.
A request by SD80MACfan for a very specific world devoid of direct American influence in the latter 20th Century. After the end of the Second World War the United States once again returned to their traditionalist ideas of isolationism. Monetary aid was sent to their European allies in order to prevent the rapid spread of communism and money was also sent to the Japanese to aid in their reconstruction. However the US still made it clear that they now refused to involve themselves, militarily and politically, in the affairs of the rest of the world. They would keep to their own and defend their interests but that was it.
Europe and what was left of their empires were forced to take the reins in the fight against communism, an act made difficult by the fact that many of their colonies began actively rebelling against them. The damage to Europe was slowly undone by the money the US continued to give to them but many of the nations were unable to be of any help in the emerging Cold War for several years.
Meanwhile the Communist sphere of influence continued to expand. China fell to Mao's Communist Party and without US support the Koreans were overtaken by revolution. The French colonial government in Indochina collapsed completely and the French were dealt a devastating defeat, leading to the overrunning of French Indochina by various revolutionary groups. Desperate, the French and British moved to assist in rearming Japan, securing Taiwan and trying to rope their colonies and the democratic nations of Europe into a power bloc of their own. France spearheaded the formation of a European Union whilst the British tried to cobble together a federated state out of their Commonwealth, a task made easier by the fact that the USA was now completely uninterested in protecting them or their interests.
In 1994 the nations of the Oceanic Defensive Association finally won the Cold War when the USSR retreated into itself to deal with it's own economic collapse and let the Warsaw Pact dissolve.
The Commonwealth of Nations is, collectively, the most powerful state in the ODA. By this point the Commonwealth is a federal entity with equal status for all member states and Britain simply being the symbolic centre of the entire entity. Whilst every member state maintains it's own parliament they are required to send representatives to the central parliament in London, a separate body from the British parliament. The central government used to be a very loose and weak organisation, originally concerning itself with foreign policy. However it has become increasingly powerful as the Commonwealth slowly evolves into an increasingly centralised entity with it's own pan-national constitution. The military is another centralised institution with every member nation's distinct armed forces having been agglomerated into a single military structure.
Without US support the European Union that was formed was a much closer knit organisation. France is still the lead nation, even to this day, but they are now facing genuine competition for prominence in the form of the recently reunited Germany. The EU is still not a properly federal superstate but they do have a unified military command structure and the European Parliament does have a lot of power through an increasingly amended and expanded constitution. France failed to keep a hold of their colonial empire, with a few exceptions, which was part of the reason why they involved themselves so deeply in the EU afterwards. With the collapse of the Warsaw Pact many former Soviet satellites have joined the EU. This has caused some stresses as immigrants from Eastern Europe move west whilst the new EU states struggle to rein in the social corruption that had been left behind by their former communist governments. They have also demilitarised somewhat since the end of the Cold War, devoting the money freed from defence costs the money to their numerous new social programs to integrate the former Warsaw Pact states.
With the US refusing to offer assistance and the Europeans unable to, at the time, the Japanese were force to re-militarise, a move that proved to be rather controversial. The rise of communism in China, Korea and many other places in East Asia helped force the decision to rearm. By 2014 Japan has become a prominent economic superpower. Though they never reached the heights of OTL they also haven't suffered the economic decline of the bubble economy either. However they still suffer from declining birthrates that are becoming an increasingly worrying issue.
Though later and slightly more violent, the collapse of the USSR still took place. After the Soviet Civil War, the Russian Federation that emerged in the wake of it's fall is turning out to be a fairly authoritarian oligarchy with a democratic façade. The Socialist Union of Russia, a more direct USSR successor state is a more orthodox and repressive communist dictatorship, maintaining order through increasingly harsh military control and cultural and educational indoctrination. Without the USA to help support so many anti-communist states the USSR' reach was extended quite a bit further. The Comintern has practically fallen apart and many socialist regimes have fallen or been overthrow but there are several that remain in the weakened and vestigial Comintern as well as plenty of other, isolated, socialist states and even more claiming to be socialist.
The Peoples Republic of China barely even pretends to be communist anymore. Like OTL the reign of Mao was incredibly destructive but his successors were able to begin the mass industrialisation of the nation. By 2014 the PRC is an oligarchic state with some socialist features and an aggressively capitalist economy. Life in China is authoritarian and restrictive but the increasingly capitalist economy is leading to the rise of a large urbanised middle class. The One Child Policy was butterflied away which means the gender disparity in China is not as bad but the population is even larger as a result and feeding it is becoming difficult. The rapid industrialisation is also polluting the environment and many Chinese cities are completely covered in toxic smog at certain times of the year. The government are involved in industry but only as shareholders and executives, often allowing the corporations to conduct business practices as they wish as long as it does not obviously contradict Chinese policies.
The United States is still a wealthy and powerful nation but it is by no means a superpower. Their political isolation has continued to the present and aside from trade they refuse to involve themselves with the outside world, especially now that the fall of the USSR has removed the threat of communism that many political pundits tried to use to convince the USA to involve itself with the rest of the world once again. Glorious isolationism, of a sort, is considered an integral part of American culture and most mainstream politics support it, direct interventionism being seen as a radical and fringe element. Then again so are those purporting total political isolation. America is still an economic power and has immense theoretical influence that they mostly refuse to exercise on principle. A Civil Rights Movement still happened as did second wave feminism. However American culture on the whole is much more conservative and focused on traditional features and ideas of what America should be. The US military is much smaller as is their nuclear arsenal, both of which are strictly used for defence and the worst case scenario of a possible invasion of their territory or those of their ODA associates and allies. Whilst not an actual member their relations with the ODA nations are cordial but the people of Europe and their associates tend to have a rather cool attitude towards the USA, often believing the USA abandoned them to do the hard work of dealing with the USSR. As the 21st Century continues the USA is growing a close economic relationship with China that is proving to be profitable.
Technology is at about the same level as OTL 2014. An internet equivalent has been created and most of the world is endeavouring to improve it's connectivity globally. Whilst the United States is isolationist it's corporations have still been happy to develop and sell technological products. Culturally this world has had some major differences. The ODA, whilst democratic never really supported decolonisation except in unrecoverable areas, often maintaining more overt presences in he portions of the Third World that supported them. This did mean that efforts to modernise or secure these states was more closely regulated though and portions of Africa are more developed than OTL. However, at the same time, more of the world has been under communist rule which has left these regions impoverished and backward. This world is also more unstable without a clear hegemonic hyperpower like OTL. Climate change is an issue of growing concern and the lead ODA nations are collaborating to find solutions to the various problems coming from it. There are also worries that the sudden rise in Chinese power and influence may upset the delicate post-Cold War balance that has emerged.