Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Airship Legacy - Part 11

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            In our review of the last century, the 1980s come in as the worst decade of the Twentieth Century. Granted, the economic situation wasn’t quite as bad as in other decades, but the Iran War coupled with the so-called “Second Depression”, makes the 1980s worse than even the depths of the Great Depression of the 1930s. Starting with the murder of the First Lady-elect Coretta King in December 1980 was a bad omen for the rest of the decade. In 1981, the British government began to increase costs on oil exported to all non-commonwealth nations or nations that weren’t allied with them in the conflict in Iran. And since BNP was the largest controller of Middle Eastern oil, it meant that nation’s like the United States were at the mercy of the new “Non-Empire Oil Tariff”. By 1983, the price of a gallon of gasoline in the United States was nearing $5,  and there were frequent shortages in many cities. These shortages would lead to a growing sense of unrest that would ultimately spell the end of the King administration in the 1984 election.
-“The Century In Review,” Time Magazine, February 21, 2000.

LONDON, JUNE 24- The Ministry of Information has announced that Our Leader Sir Oswald passed away late last night of a heart attack. Her Majesty the Queen has declared that the next 100 days shall be a time of mourning for the nation. It is reported that, even less than 12 hours since the death occurred, mourners have already started laying flowers in front of Number 10 Downing Street, and the London police believe that by noon today there will be thousands upon thousands of flower in front of the Prime Minister’s residence.
            The Prime Minister’s spokesperson stated that the funeral will be within one week, and that an election to replace Leader Mosley will occur two days after that. Although there is no official word as to who may replace Sir. Oswald, many expect that his youngest son Michael Mosley will likely fill his father’s shoes. In the last five years, the younger Mosley has been increasingly included in the affairs of state by his father.
            The funeral will be held at St. Paul’s Cathedral, and Central Security officials believe that nearly 1 million people will descend on the capital to pay their final respects to what many in the BUF are calling one of Britain’s greatest leaders.
-“The Leader Has Died,” The Daily Mail, June 24, 1980.

            Sir Oswald Mosley’s funeral was one of the largest funerals ever held in London, only dwarfed by the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II in 1993. On June 30, 1980, Britons from all over the United Kingdom poured into the city to pay their respects to the Leader. It was estimated by the Central Security Police that approximately 1.2 million people were in London for the event, lining every street that the funeral procession would go down, filling every park where large television screens where erected, and filling every public stadium that was also set up for people to view the funeral that was being broadcast live via the BBC and the BNN. There wasn’t an empty hotel room in London, and the transit systems of the British capital were taxed to their max.
            In attendance at St. Paul’s cathedral was the Queen and her family, every member of Parliament, the Prime Minister of Russia, the Chancellor of Germany, the Vice President of the United States, the President of France, the Prime Minister of Canada, the Chancellor of South Africa, and Premier of Australia, and Prime Minister of India, and many other heads of state and government. Notably absent, however, was the Premier of Pakistan, who refused to attend in protest to the Iran War.
            The Queen praised the departed Prime Minister for his wise leadership and his ability to pull Great Britain out of the economic depression that had set in after the London Treaty. “He put the ‘Great’ back in Great Britain.” Sir Oswald’s son Michael reminisced about how good of a father the Leader had been, and how he’d taught him to use good judgment and humility in anything he did.
            Two days following the funeral, the 100 members of the House of Commons met to elect Sir Oswald’s successor. As predicted, Michael Mosley won the majority vote (79), and was sworn in as Prime Minister.
-Hayes, Dr. Thomas. Rise of Fascism in Britain. Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2001.

WASHINGTON, OCT 1- President King’s broad ranging Affirmative Action Bill was signed into law this morning by the President at a special ceremony at the White House. The law, known also as the 1 to 4 Law, will require all employers to hire 1 person of non-Caucasian descent for ever 4 persons of Caucasian descent. This also applies to university enrollment. Leaders from the Republican Party, along with the newly formed States Rights Party and even the American People’s Party, state that this is a step in the wrong direction.
            Republican Senator George Bush stated that, “While I support efforts to bring about greater equality in this nation, I fear that the 1 to 4 Law will only bring about greater racial tensions and hostility across the country.” APP Congressmen William Clinton echoed these sentiments, saying “the American People’s Party is committed to full equality for all Americans, but we believe this law will do more harm than good, creating more rifts between the races instead of healing the ones that already exist.”
-“Affirmative Action is Law!” The Washington Post, October 2, 1981.

ST. LOUIS, AUG 1- From coast to coast, people have taken to the streets to protest the high prices of gas, and demanding that President King and Congress fix the situation. Republicans are calling for the United States to enter the Iran War so that Britain will drop the oil tariff. Here in St. Louis, there were numerous drive offs at city gas stations, and impromptu riots at several others. One gas station was actually set on fire.
            In California, there were multiple reports of people with weapons taking control of gas stations and allowing people to fill up without paying. At the moment, the highest gas in the country is over $4 a gallon, and even in places like Oklahoma and Texas, where there are gas production facilities, fuel prices are hovering around $3. President King is urging the American people to be patient and that fuel prices will come down soon. Protestors have been picketing in front of the White House for weeks, chanting “Fix the Gas Crisis!” “Invade Iran!” “Help out the Brits!” and “Lets Join Mosley!”.
            This year’s mid-term elections are expected to bring numerous victories to Republicans across the country, and it is likely that the Republicans could gain control of both houses of Congress. And if the gas crisis keeps up, King’s chances for reelection in 1984 do not look good.
-“Gas Riots Strike Across the Country,” The New York Times, August 1, 1982.

CAPE CANAVRERAL, SEP 2-  The ASEA has confirmed that the team that launched from Cape Canaveral last week has successfully landed on the surface of the Moon. In a statement issued soon after the ASEA confirmed the landing, President King said, “Today is a great day in the history of not only our nation, but in the history of all mankind. For today, for the first time since Adam and Eve first walked this Earth, there is a permanent settlement of man that is not on the surface of our beloved home planet. I congratulate the ASEA and it’s engineers, scientists, and our brave cosmonauts for this great feat, and wish them luck and wisdom in their future expansion of this base on the Moon.”
            Project Luna’s 27 cosmonauts will be setting up a small 3,000 square foot base facility that is to be expanded over the coming years and decades. The facility has been named Liberty Base by the ASEA.
-“Project Luna Team Lands on Moon!” The New York Times, September 2, 1982.

            In the mid-term election of 1982, the Liberty Party lost it’s control of both houses of Congress, resulting in Republican control of the Senate and a plurality in the House of Representatives where the Republicans had the largest number of seats. This resulted in one of the worst political deadlocks in U.S. History, with President King blocking much of the Republican’s legislation while they blocked his agenda. For two whole years, very little got done in Washington. Senator George HW Bush of Massachusetts announced his intent to run in late 1983, and immediately began campaigning. Voter frustration at the skyrocketing gas prices and the worsening economy ultimately doomed the King campaign, and with it the Liberty and APP congressional elections, since the APP again backed King for the presidency.
            George H.W. Bush received nearly 60% of the vote in November of 1984, bringing to a close 12 years of Democrat/Liberty rule from the White House. Having won their first Presidential election since 1968 and only the second Presidential election since the 1930s, the Republicans were exuberant, and the Liberty Party was in shock. Party leaders immediately began asking themselves, “How did we get so disconnected from the people of this country?”
-Johnson, Dr. Kyle. The King Presidency, 1981-1985. New York, American Press Company: 2000.

WASHINGTON, FEB 1- President Bush, in a special address this evening before both houses of Congress, called on the legislators to declare a state of war to exist between the United States and the so-called Islamic Republic of Iran. Congress has since approved this request, and now the US finds itself at war. President Bush said he would be going to London within the next month to visit with Prime Minister Michael Mosley to “heal wounds caused by past administrations and to work with Premier Mosley to plan America and Britain’s join war effort to put down the rebels in Iran and to secure the oil fields in that country for the West.”
            Many across the country have started to celebrate the long-awaited declaration of war, burning flags of the Islamic Republic, and effigies of the Ayatollah. A rally is planned for tomorrow night on the steps of the capital to show support for the decision. At the same time, opposition protests have also started to break out, and there are several protest rallies planned for tomorrow night. The most fervent opposition is coming from the West Coast, where the American People’s Party enjoys a majority in all three states. In a dramatic scene of protest, the California Congressional Delegation got up and walked out of the joint session after war was officially declared.
            Mobilization of the Armed Forces will begin soon, and it is expected that U.S. troops will be in Iran before the end of March.
-“Bush: We Are At War,” The Washington Post, February 2, 1985.

WASHINGTON, APR 9- The Republican-controlled Congress has repealed the highly unpopular “1 to 4 Law”, officially known as the “Affirmative Action Law”. Passed under the King Administration, the law forced all employers to higher one non-white citizen for ever four whites they had employed, and required all universities to enroll one non-white student for every four white students. The high rate of unemployment, which peaked at 12.5% in 1985, is blamed on the law.
            President Bush promised during the 1984 campaign that if elected, he and his party would do all they could to repeal the law as part of their efforts to pull America out of the “Second Depression”. The president told reporters this afternoon that, “Today is a great victory for the American people, and for the cause of true racial equality. It is my hope, and the hope of millions of Americans, that someday our society will truly be color-blind, and it will not matter whether your skin is white, black, red, yellow or brown. We are all Americans, and it is time the law represented this future we hope to build.”
            It is expected that tougher anti-discrimination laws will be passed in the next few months, to replace the 1 to 4 Law.
-“1 To 4 Law Repealed,” The Washington Post, April 10, 1986

            President Bush went to London aboard the newly launched GZ-305, the USS Eagle II, which replaced the largely antiquated GZ-9 that had sat in it’s hangar for nearly a decade, unofficially retired following the assassination of President Humphrey. The plans for the Eagle II had been on the drawing board for several years, but Presidents Kennedy and King would not give them the go ahead. When Bush was elected, he had the ship put under construction the day after the inauguration, and it was launched in July of 1986, and President Bush took the craft on it’s maiden voyage to a conference in London with Prime Minister Michael Mosley and several leaders of the Commonwealth. By this time, American forces had already been deployed to Iran for over a year, and were fighting side-by-side with Commonwealth troops. The republican capital of Tehran was still in enemy hands, but was being bombarded daily by US and UK forces. Many experts figured that most of Iran would by under US-UK control by the end of 1987, and so Prime Minister Mosley wanted to try and nail down a preliminary post-war plan for Iran. There were two main plans that were put forth, the Division Plan and the Dominion Plan. The first, suggested by Mosley and supported by Bush and the Australians, called for the division of Iran between Iraq and the Dominion of Pakistan. Pakistan, which didn’t support the war and did not want the extra territory once it finished, was against this plan. Britain’s ally, Iraq, supported the idea, however. Pakistan and the Dominion of South Africa both supported the idea of making Iran a dominion of the Empire, which they believed would be the best way to avoid post war violence. In the end, the Division Plan was chosen, but was to be kept secret until the end of the war.
-Flemmings, Dr. Samuel. The Black Hole that was Iran. British Press House, London: 2002.

ISLAMABAD, DEC 11-  Several anti-war members of the Pakistani government that were recently dismissed for their strong opinions against the Iran War have released information to the world press that reveals the post-war plans decided upon by the British Commonwealth and the United States. It appears that the hopeful victors plan on dividing Iran between the Dominion of Pakistan and Iraq, essentially dissolving the Iranian state. This news has been met with wide-spread protests throughout the Dominion of Pakistan, where protesters gathered outside Parliament and chanted “Down with the Queen,” “Islamic Solidarity for Iran,” “Say No to London!” and even a few “Islamic Revolution Now.”
            British Prime Minister Michael Mosley has denied these allegations, saying that “Iran will not be divided after the war. The London Conference decided we’d give the Iranians a few choices to vote on once the Islamic Republic has been defeated in the north.” However, the Pakistani’s who released the information have distributed official papers with Mosley’s signature that seem to indicate otherwise. These documents very clearly state that Mosley, along with President Bush, approved of the so-called “Division Plan,” and that it was approved at the London Conference this past summer. So far, the White House has yet to make any sort of statement about the validity of these allegations.
            In Iran, the British Military announced this morning a ban on all large public gatherings, seemingly to stem the chance of any major rioting like what has occurred in Pakistan, although the British commanders in Iran say that the order is unrelated.
-“Pakistani’s Reveal Secret of London Conference,” The New York Times, December 11, 1986.

            The “Division Plan Crisis” during the winter of 1986-1987 led to a lot of anti-war support in the United States and in several of the Dominions that put increasing pressure on all the Coalition governments to bring an end to the war. And, it forced the British to abandon the Division Plan, when President Bush announced that he was in full support of “any plan that left pro-Western Iranian independence intact.” In April of 1987, all the allied nations agreed to the Dominion Plan, including the rump Iranian government that had been largely a puppet since the British invasion in 1979. This seemed to settle things down considerably in the United States, where support for the war increased.
            Things in Pakistan, however, were not as peaceful. In October of 1987, the “Pakistani Islamic Party” was formed, calling for a thorough “Islamification” of the country. The more radical PIP members called for an end of Dominion, since it was improper for Pakistan to have a Christian Queen. In February of 1988, the British Central Security Police “discovered” a link between the PIP and the Islamic Republic of Iran, and forced the Dominion’s government to ban the party. This led to major unrest in that country that would sow the seeds of future revolt.
-Flemmings, Dr. Samuel. The Black Hole that was Iran. British Press House, London: 2002.

TEHRAN, OCT 1- Her Majesty’s Armed Forces have confirmed that the rebel forces in Tehran have fled to the countryside, and that the nation’s former capital has been mostly secured. There have still been sporadic firefights in some parts of the city where random clusters of holdouts evaded the initial British and American troops that stormed the city yesterday morning. Coalition commanders believe that these pockets of resistance will be  routed out in due course.
            Prime Minister Mosley declared tomorrow, October 2, as a national holiday in celebration of this great victory. “We have been fighting the good fight for 9 long years now, and our determination and perseverance has been rewarded. Great Britain, the Commonwealth, and our allies are triumphant. It is my promise to the British people that our troops will begin to come home within a year! This war shall be over soon!”
            Iran’s former capital lies in ruins, a sign of nearly a decade of fighting. For more than a year, the city has been under nearly constant siege by Coalition forces, and thousands of  rebel non-combatants are believed to have been killed in the run-up to the final push on the city. Initial estimates by commonwealth engineers is that it will take up to ten years to get the city to about where it was before the war, and at the costs of close to a billion pounds.
-“Tehran Falls!” The Daily Mail, October 1, 1988.

WASHINGTON, NOV 5- President George HW Bush has been reelected as President of the United States, beating out Socialist candidate William Clinton and Liberty Party candidate Joseph Lieberman. Many political analysts believe that the Socialists and the Liberty Party hurt their chances of getting their candidate into office since they decided to field separate candidates instead of both backing the same person. This divided their support base and gave the Republicans the chance to keep Bush in office for four more years. However, this might still be optimistic, since the President received 56% of last night’s vote.
            Bush has been given a lot of credit for pulling the United States out of the “Second Depression” that started during the King Presidency, caused mostly by high oil tariffs imposed by the United Kingdom. Since Bush was elected and the United States entered the Iran War, oil prices have plummeted down to their lowest in over 15 years, and there has been a flood of new jobs on the market that have put the economy on a high note.
            Also giving a boost to President Bush’s reelection was the recent fall of Tehran to Coalition forces, and the prospect of the successful end to the Iran War within the next year.
-“Bush Wins Reelection!” The Washington Post, November 6, 1988.

ISLAMABAD, JAN 12- Her Majesty’s Government has confirmed that rebels belonging to the anti-Commonwealth “Pakistani Islamic Party” have seized control over the government sector of the Pakistani capital. Radio reports coming from the rebels state that they have executed the leaders of the Dominion government. This cannot be independently confirmed. The rebels have apparently proclaimed the birth of the “Islamic Republic of Pakistan”, and are calling on all “good Muslims” to overthrow the British regime that has “oppressed” the Pakistanis.
            So far, there has been no official response from the Royal Government as to what sort of action will be taken against the rebels, if any. The Dominion of India has placed their military on high alert, fearing that the violence could spread into it’s territory. There are reports of violence in every major city in Pakistan, and the British Foreign Office is urging all British citizens in Pakistan to evacuate as soon as possible, and has suspended all civilian travel to the country until further notice.
-“Rebels Seize Pakistani Capital,” The London Times, January 13, 1989.

            The Islamic Revolution in Pakistan in 1989 was a game changer for the whole Iran War. On January 20, the British government announced that they would be invading Pakistan to “put down the anti-Commonwealth, anti-Western” rebellion that had engulfed the Dominion of Pakistan. British troops stationed in Pakistan rolled out to secure the areas near their bases, and troops in Iran rolled across the boarder into Pakistan on January 31st. The Dominion of India ordered in troops on February 2.
            Initially, the British Government stated publically that their invasion would crush the rebellion in just a few short months. Most of their armed forces remained in Iran, to mop up the resistance there. This turned out to be a hopeful fantasy, however. A vast majority of the Pakistani population supported the rebellion, and guerrilla fighting was much more fierce than it had been in Iran. The United Kingdom began to drain more and more troops from the first theater of war and into the new one, leaving the United States with an increasing burden in Iran, where the rebels renewed their efforts to drive out the invaders.
            In Great Britain, many British-born Pakistani’s, along with those who were citizens of the Dominion, began to protest the invasion, saying that this was a popular revolution that the British had no right to interfere in. On May 1, 1989, 100,000 people gathered in front of Parliament to protest the war. The Central Security Police was called in to disperse the protest, which soon after devolved into a riot. 300 people were arrested, and several hundred more were wounded, with 2 being killed. A far larger rally was held in November of that year, in front of Buckingham Palace. This became known as the Buckingham Palace Riots, where the nearly 250,000 people turned to violence after the CSP showed up and began beating the protestors. When one CSP officer opened fire and killed three people, all hell broke loose, and in the end, the CSP arrested nearly 700 people, and it was estimated that 5,000 were injured. Nearly 200 rioters were killed, along with 90 CSP officers.
            On November 15th, the Queen made an address from the Palace, condemning the rioters use of violence and called on the nation to remain calm. This would turn those who had been out in protest more radical, and did nothing more than add fuel to the fire.  A mere ten days later, the Pakistani Solidarity Coalition was formed, and quickly become one of the most feared terror organizations in the UK throughout the 1990s. On December 1st, the PSC bombed three Tube stations in London, killing 340 people. The violence would only get worse from there.
            In the United States, there was a very mixed reaction from the public about the early stages of the operations in Pakistan. The United States was not formally involved, but their responsibilities in Iran (and with them, casualties) began to increase, and the population began to get extremely war-weary. A major anti-war rally was held in Washington with around 150,000 people on July 1, 1989, calling for an end to hostilities and calling on the US to pressure the British into pulling out of Pakistan. It wouldn’t be until the 1990s that the situation in America would become more violent, and this would lead to a major political shift in Washington.
-Gordman, Dr. Jacob. Pakistan: A revolution that changed the world. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. 2009.

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