The United StatesThe Republic of the United States of America, or U.S.A. for short, was a federal republic that existed in North America. It was comprised of 13 commonwealths, and before that 50 states and many other territories and a federal district: District of Columbia.
The United States was founded by thirteen colonies of Britain located along the Atlantic seaboard. On July 4, 1776, they issued the Declaration of Independence, which proclaimed their independence from Great Britain and their formation of a cooperative union. The rebellious states defeated Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War, the first successful colonial war of independence. A federal convention adopted the current United States Constitution on September 17, 1787; its ratification the following year made the states part of a single republic with a strong central government. The Bill of Rights, comprising ten constitutional amendments guaranteeing many fundamental civil rights and freedoms, was ratified in 1791.
The Remnants was founded by and is descended from remnants of the nation's original government and claim to be the true continuation/successor to the United States. But they are not representative of the national identity as a whole, being an immoral organization created by and exclusively serving the interests of a specific, shadowy element of the original government.
Of all the attempts by more down-to-Earth wastelanders to reestablish the original ideals and values of the United States, no one has been able to exactly.
The American Commonwealths Edit
Beginning sometime in 1969, the Republic had an intermediate level of government between the 50 states and the federal government. The nation was divided into 13 commonwealths, the same year the Virgo II mission landed Americans on the Moon in July. The United States flag was changed as well to reflect the new political reality. Accordingly, the new flag depicted thirteen stars to represent the commonwealths.
The commonwealths reserved certain powers that used to belong to states; issuing license plates and establishing preservation areas being among those seen. The states, however, still possessed a certain level of sovereignty within their commonwealth. Each state still had its own flag (although modified to show its status within its commonwealth), and state lines were still quite relevant. Additionally, a state was listed as the place of production on the package pre-War MREs rather than a commonwealth.
It was hoped that the new administrative division of the country would help create legislation broad enough to benefit those states with common regional concerns, but narrow enough not to affect those states with dissimilar interests or political cultures, which would help the nation better meet the challenges posed by the Communist threat to U.S. democracy. In reality, it created even more political strife in the U.S. government, as commonwealths typically did everything they could to promote their own interests at the expense of other commonwealths.
Government and Military Information Edit
Federal GovernmentThe pre-War federal government of the Republic was not too different from that of 21st-century U.S. in our own universe, albeit significantly less democratic by the mid-21st century. Agencies of the federal government include two concerned with military affairs: the War Department and the Department of Defense, which may have actually been the same agency or, if they were separate entities, were both responsible for overseeing the development of various military research projects, from HERMES to T-51b power armor.
Other federal agencies mentioned in the games are the Department of Energy (or Water and Power), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Unamerican Activities Force, Secret Service, Bureau of Alcohol, Drugs, Tobacco, Firearms and Lasers, the United States Space Administration, Federal Fitness Registry, the National Catastrophe Relief Auxiliary, United States Geological Survey and the Defense Intelligence Agency. The legislative branch of the federal government was still composed of the House of Representatives and the Senate, though whether they represented the individual states or now represented the different American commonwealths in some form is unknown.
Armed ForcesBefore the Great War, the United States Armed Forces were the overall unified military forces of the United States, composed of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and Air Force. The President of the United States served as the commander-in-chief of the U.S. military, with the War Department acting as the principal organ by which military policy was carried out.
After the Great War, the Remnant Forces are the direct descendant of the U.S. military. The Brotherhood of Steel, on the other hand, was started by former U.S. Army soldiers who rebelled against their unethical orders to protect scientists carrying out involuntary mutational experiments on military prisoners.
The RemnantsMembers of the Remnants both embraced the idea of a nuclear war and knew that the common man could not survive it. They believed that as long as the "important people" of the United States survived, they could regroup quickly and wipe out Communism once and for all. Though not technically part of the Remnants, many powerful corporations benefited from the Remnants's actions, and their research facilities were protected during the nuclear firestorm of 2077.
In 2073, as the global race to exploit the handful of remaining fossil-fuel resources reached its fevered peak, the United States managed to stake a claim on the world's last known supply of crude oil, buried thousands of feet beneath the Pacific Ocean. Poseidon Energy, a major U.S. energy company, was contracted to build an oil rig and extract the oil. Before long, the oil ran dry and the oil rig was abandoned by Poseidon, and re purposed as an Enclave facility.
In 2077, with total nuclear war imminent, the President of the United States and a number of other U.S. government officials left their posts in Washington, D.C. to take refuge in a number of secret and isolated locations around the United States. Among them was the Poseidon Oil Rig off the coast of California. Here, the President himself set up a secret base from which the United States could continue to exist and wage war on China, with the eventual goal of retaking the continental United States from its post-atomic state. From 2077 on, the remnant of the U.S. government surviving on this oil rig started to openly call itself the Remnants.
The End of AmericaEver since the end of World War II in 1945, the United States had sought to become the sole remaining superpower in the world, aiming to control the globe's major energy resources and influence the direction of life in other nations. In the 21st century, this became more apparent as the Resource Wars raged between the European Commonwealth and the oil-rich states of the Middle East, the United Nations disbanded in acrimony, and the Soviet Union slowly declined. The United States found itself with no real rival on the global scene except the People's Republic of China, though it was economically and militarily behind the U.S. at first. However, the energy crisis of the mid-twenty-first century hit the United States harder than expected, compounded by the outbreak of the New Plague in 2052. In 2054, a nuclear exchange in the Middle East prompted the U.S. government to establish Project Safehouse, which was intended to create 122 underground fallout shelters that would save a portion of U.S. society from the ravages of nuclear war or an unstoppable global pandemic. But Vault-Tec, the leaders of this operation, used most of the vaults as social experiments to see the effects of these experiments on the civilians inside. Five years later, in 2059, in order to protect its Alaskan oil interests, the United States established the Anchorage Front Line, to defend its stockpiles of oil from potential invaders.
In 2060, stockpiles of oil ran dry and the pursuit of the last underground reservoirs of petroleum emptied the U.S. economy. People pushed their cars around and the political pressure to research alternative sources of energy increased enormously. To maintain its status as a superpower in spite of the crisis the United States expanded the size of its military and commissioned a government defense contractor, West Tek, to create powered infantry armor, intended to replace tanks on the battlefield. This project eventually proved to be the salvation of U.S. industry, and, in the summer of 2066, the first crude nuclear fusion cell was developed as part of this research effort and was then adapted to civilian needs. Thus was the start of the "Atomic Age."
This fact, coupled with U.S. unwillingness to share the world's last untapped oil field in the Pacific Ocean with other energy-starved nations, prompted China to declare open war against the United States and invade Alaska in 2066, initiating the Sino-American War. The initial Chinese campaign was successful, but soon Chinese and U.S. soldiers found themselves bogged down in a war of attrition, with both sides unable to gain any sort of meaningful advantage over the other. Even the mighty American T-45d power armor units did not tip the scales, as China's Crimson Dragoon units rampaged behind U.S. lines, disrupting the U.S. Army's logistics and transport. About a year later on October 23, 2077, at about 9:00am, the first ultra-nuclear bombs from China reached the U.S., landing in Massachusetts, Virginia, Alaska and California, erupting into the Great War.
Post War United States
Despite it all, humanity survived the atomic catastrophe. The U.S. federal government managed to survive as the American Remnants, the only known remnant of any official pre-War government in this alternate universe.
Following the Great War, the American Commonwealths disintegrated into what became known as the wasteland. When land across the country eventually became less radiated and more habitable, survivors reestablished settlements and began new post-war lives.
In 2251, Douglas Granite Senior, father of Douglas Granite Junior Sergeant in the Enclave, unofficially recreated the United States of America. He and four groups of 35 militiamen and his Enclave company took over Arlington and South Washington and flew his companies flag above the two districts and established the "Remains of the American Republic" or in it's short sense; "New America". Douglas Granite reigned as Chief Executive, taking over other West Virginian and Maryland settlements, until in 2288, all Granite Company flags were took down and replaced with the former United States flag, consisting of the 13 stars to represent the former 13 commonwealths and 13 stripes to represent the former 13 states.
On July 4th, 2288, the 512th anniversary of Independence, Granite's New America and the New England Republic united forming the United States. The old, prewar flag was flown from what remained of The Pentagon, which serves as the current capitol of the new United States. And on July 10th, Preston Garvey became was inaugurated as the 1st official President of the reformed United States. Douglas resigned as Chief Executive on July 16th, and Preston Garvey merged the position "President" and Chief Executive together.
A flag with 13 stars and stripes, one for each of the original U.S. states, was mandated by the Second Continental Congress' Flag Resolution of 1777. As states were added to the Union, more stars were successively added to the flag until the flag of 50 stars was created in 1960.
The United States of this alternate timeline, at least since the formation of the thirteen American commonwealths in the mid-twentieth century, uses a flag with either 12 or 13 stars in a circle, with one large central star. It closely resembles the Cowpens flag with the same design, but a smaller central star.
The Cowpens was an American Revolutionary War-era flag used in the Battle of Cowpens, South Carolina, in 1781 that resulted in one of the major victories of the young nation over its British mother country. The only difference between the Cowpens and the US flag is a much-enlarged middle star used on the U.S. flag in this universe, probably to represent the nation as a whole.