Perhaps when one discuss on one of the most turbulent era in humanity history, one can not escaped from reviewing the final decade of twentieth century, a period known to most as Global War. Much documentation on this very era had been published prior to this very article, whereby the author wished for the readers not to rely solely on information contained herein. The purpose of this article is to provide readers with various insights during the much-debated era of humankind prior to the First Robotech War.
OverviewEditShortly after the devastation following Second World War in 1945 CE, the world was divided into two different ideological Bloc, the democratic states, driven by its capitalistic economy headed by United States of America (USA) & her allies in North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), while the communist states headed by United Soviet Socialists Republic (USSR) & her allies within the Warsaw Pact (in extension, People;s Republic of China).
The Cold War lasted for almost four decades, marked by rapid militarization programmes & developments by both parties. The capitalist nations were going through economic success, while the communist blocs were known for their over-bloated military forces. Several wars was fought indirectly, mainly through proxies, with arms supplied by both parties namely in the incessant Arab-Israeli Wars in 1960s – 1970s. The USA suffered horrendous setback in her military campaign in Vietnam against the Communist North Vietnam which in turn aided with military assistance by USSR. The USSR later suffered the same fate in 1980s during her decade long campaign in Afghanistan at the hands of local resistance fighters, Mujaheddin who were supplied with US weaponry. The rot began to set in USSR as she struggled to maintain her perilous economy against the ever-demanding military needs in the futile Afghanistan campaign.
In the Middle East, a decade long war of attrition between Iraq (supplied by Western powers) & Iran (supplied by People;s Republic of China) showed no signs of abating as Iraq began to unleash its chemical arsenals against Iranian forces & citizens; even Iraq’s own dissident Kurds minorities. The situation later was brought under control through United Nations (UN) – an influential world body at that time – brokered peace truce, however after the death tolls climbed to more than 1 million lives on both side.
Following the reunification of East & West Germany in 1989 CE, Cold War finally came to end as USSR began to crumble from within upon which many of its former republics declared independence. The democratic, but much weaker, Republic of Russia (CIS) was no longer viewed by her former nemesis as a threat to the world.
A New MenaceEdit
However, new threat emerged in Middle East when an Arab-military regime nation - Iraq, buoyed by misguided nationalism, invaded Kuwait in 1990. The hastily assembled international Coalition Forces, headed by the powerful USA forced the Iraqis out of occupied territories in what to be known as the First Gulf War. Iraq – the catalyst responsible for decade long Iraq-Iran war & later the Gulf Wars - was later slapped with economic & military sanctions by UN. The victory later cemented USA as the sole, most potent military force in world history, much like Roman Empire in ancient times.While most developed & developing nations of the world continued to reap the benefits of capitalism in early & mid 1990s, perhaps the rise of the sleeping dragon; People's Republic of China; was nothing short of, some commentators of that era would say, spectacular. It threw away the Marxist-economic system, reformed its economy by adopting laissez-faire system, turning it into the world’s largest consumer market while retained its communist system of governance. As China began to accumulate newfound wealth, so begun the first step towards modernizing its military might in earnest with acquisition of the latest in Russian military hardware & key technologies.
The world was horrified with the new scourge – in disguise as nationalism – as it ravaged the Balkans & Africa as ‘ethnic-cleansing; stunned the world. The Serbs in Balkans slaughtered hundreds of thousands Muslim Slavs & Croats in senseless murders, while the same tragedy continued in African continent, the Rwanda Crisis where the death toll numbered in millions in civil war ravaged nation - Rwanda as ethnic Hutus butchered rival Tutsis. The United Nations (UN), the largest grouping of nations throughout the world, was criticized for its inaction over the Balkans & Rwandan issues, thus international peace keeping missions were sent in into the troubled regions. However, the damage was done as group of nations began to loose faith in the UN. USA; aided by NATO - later assumed the mantle as the world&;s number 1 ‘Policeman’ as it tried to prevent the Serbian’s second round of ethnic cleansing from slaughtering fellow Kosovars through use of force. During its Balkan campaign, US forces mistakenly bombed China’s Embassy, effectively strangled somewhat favorable relationship between two countries following China’s economic boom.
As ties between two countries continued from bad to worse, China tested US patience through military exercises over Straits of Taiwan, as it began issued threats of invading Taiwan by any necessary means. Later in that decade, China’s longtime ally, North Korea – besets with economic failure & starvation; started a global nuclear crisis as it threatened to restart its nuclear programme. On top of that, crisis between Pakistan (armed by China) & India kept getting worst as both nations traded volleys in disputed border area.
Meanwhile, Russia began its war campaign over Chechnya as her military forces battled Chechens insurgents in incessant warfare. To beef up her ravaged economy, Russia became the world;s top major arms dealer where its military products practically littered the world, especially China. Various terrorists organizations also benefited from Russian new policy – albeit indirectly – through black markets. While on the African fronts, genocide & petty civil wars continued unabated.Later, as economic crises of late 1990s destabilized & shook up several nations of the world, South East Asian nations (collectively known as ASEAN) were alarmed by China;s claim over Spratlys islets in South China Sea, so much so that ASEAN began their arms race over perceived China’s threat to the region as naval clashes had begun in the Spratlys isles between China & their South East Asia communist rival, Vietnam. As world economic turned grim, so did humanity fate, as several nations geared up for war. Korean crisis escalated as North Korea issued war threats to South Korea & Japan – with several border incursions, both Pakistan & India armed their nuclear arsenals from what had been full scale border conflict to become an outright nuclear war. While China, somewhat helpless by actions of both her allies (North Korea & Pakistan), began to exert her war machines in show of force across the Straits of Taiwan & Spratlys isles. USA, alarmed by these events, sent in her naval fleet over the Pacific to contain China, while bolstered USA forces stationed in Japan, South Korea & Singapore. The Five Power Defense Association (FPDA – Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand & United Kingdom) bolstered their presence in South East Asia to contain China’s armed muscle in the region. Even several terrorists groups, armed with biological weapons, were waiting to strike against USA, European Union (EU) & Russia.
As China & her allies intensified their presence over hotspots across Asian continent, so did USA & its allies. Even UN stood helpless as time of reckoning drew nearer & nearer for humankind.
If not for the catastrophic event on July 1999, humankind would have perished by their own doings. Fortunately, as history would attest, it took a strange twist of fate that saved humanity where the saviour would be a mysterious visitor from the stars.An alien vessel folded out from deep space & flew over the east coast of US before crash landed on Macross Island, one of many remote South Pacific islands. As a result, hundreds of thousands humans died, ironically not because of war, but rather from geological & atmospheric disturbances, with several nations, such as US, Japan & China suffered one way or another through natural disasters occurred during the visitor’s entry into Earth orbit to its final resting place.
As nations throughout the world struggled during the aftermath, UN began to overtake its role as the world protector once more as the world organization began to pour much needed aid & send in its rescue teams to stricken areas. Meanwhile, leaders of the world sat down to assess the damaged in both property & human lives. What began as an emergency meeting between the heads of US, China & Russia became an assembly of all nations
During the following months, through joint-task international investigation teams revealed that what was thought earlier as a huge meteorite turned out to be an alien spacecraft. It was later codenamed ASS-1 (Alien Star Ship). Public announcements were made that a colossal meteorite, an asteroid 3 km in diameter, composed of great quantities of metal, impacted with Earth. The matter was treated as top secret until the chaos and confusion following the event was brought under control. Leaders of the world later called for a cease-fire, although the peace terms brokered by UN were somewhat unsatisfactory to all parties concerned. A precise, accurate, and minute investigation of ASS-1, later christened as Super Dimensional Fortress One (SDF-1) began in earnest. South Ataria Island was designated under UN sphere of jurisdiction where a joint task force of international research parties under UN banner were flew in from across the world.
In September 1999 CE, from the findings reported of the study of the SDF-1, it was discovered that the alien spacecraft was military in nature & its crew were on average of six times the size of humans, with exceptional individuals exceeded fifty feet in height. Terrified by the all too real prospect of invasion from deep space, a project was begun to unite Earth into one unified nation.
Under UN banner, a unification campaign – known as globalization - was launched, upon implementation, would rendered socio-economic barriers obsolete upon which integrated most, if not all, world economies into one cohesive, beneficial economic entity. It was not long; however, for various groups ranged from environmentalists, fundamentalists, extremists, nationalists, economists, even terrorists were up against that very idea, which had been implemented with mixed results. Riots were organized throughout the world against the injustices of globalization – which some were justified – but little to no effect to the unification process.
Unfortunately, although peace had been brokered, conflicts began anew as several nations, such as US & China, continued to remain head locked over several issues, particularly of Taiwan. In Middle East, a new Intifadha Uprising in Palestine was launched after an ultra-Orthodox Israeli leader visited a sacred site for Muslims. However, even though peace process between India & Pakistan was successful, several terrorists group threatened the fragile peace process. In South East Asia, an intricate network of terrorists launched a campaign of terror in southern Phillippines, southern Thailand & Indonesia. Piracy along international waters namely the Malacca Straits & South China Sea increased dramatically, thus threatening the world’s buoyant sea trade. Several nations continued to struggle against domestic insurgencies that threatened their sovereignties. In June 2000 CE, an official announcement was made in lieu of the framing a unified terrestrial government under UN auspices. Construction of the Super Dimension Fortress-1 (SDF-1) was formally announced to the world, though the true nature of its underlying alien technology was kept "top secret". As plan was under way, an earlier top secret project of military nature were began months before at the site of SDF-1 where weapons programmes against alien goliaths were carried out. Under UN banner, a new military organization, as opposed to former UN Peacekeeping Force, was established as United Nations Defense Forces (UNDF). Thus, the first of Robotech Defense Forces came into being.
Technology continued to grow faster with many technological wonders gained from deciphered alien technology aboard SDF-1 paved the way for Robotechnology. Under new United Nations Robotech Research Centre founded by Dr. Emil Lang, a top German scientist, several ambitious projects were carried out, especially military technical advancement in weapons platform, Earth’s first starship project, but perhaps the most ambitious of all, the construction of Mars Base Sara in 2001 CE.
War Against TerrorismEdit
The first real blow to unification campaign occurred in September 2001. Al-Qaeda, an international terrorist group hijacked several passenger planes & launched suicide missions by strategically crashed the planes into World Trade Center in New York & Pentagon, marked the second successful surgical strike on US soil by foreign aggressor following Pearl Harbor incident in World War II. The Americans answer was swift, effectively declared a state of war against global terrorism. Afghanistan, long a hotbed for terrorist training centers, was swiftly overran by coalition forces. Unfortunately, US conveniently ignored the Middle East crisis which undermined the unification process, & situation was fast becoming toxic between Palestinians & Israelis.However, the war on terrorism was taking a new scope. Under charges of harboring weapons of mass destruction - Iraq – its economy ravaged by decade-long sanctions imposed by UN post 1st Gulf War - (a decade-old nemesis), was a natural target. US launched its next phase of war on Iraq the following year despite went against international protests & uproars. US & UK went ahead of invading Iraq without UN Security Council approval, effectively alienated their key NATO allies (i.e Germany, France) & incurred the wrath of Muslim nations. Coalition forces, headed by US conquered Iraq with easy victory, but the damage was done as the international community, began to have doubts over unification movement under UN following US unilateral actions. Ironically, it was US proposal to push for globalization programmes through international consensus, only to be undermined later by its actions.
After less than stellar performance done by US forces in management of post-war Iraq (compounded by lack of sufficient evidence on Iraq&'s weapons of mass destruction), while turned a blind eye towards Palestinian cause, the situation in Middle East degenerated at frighteningly fast rate as US forces could no longer contained Iraqis insurgencies & US civilians through out Middle East fast becoming tempting targets for terrorist cells. Unable to extricate itself from the mess it created, the once proud US administration later tried to make amends with its allies & international nations by cooperating with UN in Iraq&;s post war management. UNDF units were sent into Iraq & integrated with reduced number of coalition forces stationed there. Followed by ever increased violence between Palestine & Israel, UN later dispatched a large UNDF ground force to Jerusalem, which was later put under the jurisdiction of UN, deprived both Israelis & Palestinian a source over their dispute. Under the guidance of UN, a new democratic Iraq was set-up, followed soon with the independence of Palestine state. UNDF later on oversaw the relocation of civilians involved in SDF-1 rebuilding programme, upon which later sprang up a local city on the South Ataria island, which long being renamed to Macross island.
However, following US unilateral actions over Iraq, anti-unification movements began increasingly vocal in their opposition towards unified world governance. Ironically, though, US armed forces later played a big role in UNDF (especially in UN Navy, UN Air Force), eventually all UNDF structures were patterned along its US counterparts.
UN General Assembly later that year was dissolved, in its place a new governing body – UN Governing Council – was set up. This body would ultimately provide the blueprint & ultimately evolved into United Earth Government.
As the time for unification of world's nations drew nearer, as UNDF became the single, most potent military forces established in four corners of the world, anti-unification movements gained momentum. All across the world, it seemed perfect time for the first ever United Earth Government (UEG). Almost, in a reality, everything was far from rosy. All across the world, those who opposed the unification campaign grew in large numbers by organizing protests, violent demonstrations & even outright rebellions. However, by January 2005 CE, UEG was formally established with former US senator, Harlan J. Niven appointed as the first UEG’s Prime Minister.
UEG, through its armed forces – UNDF- acknowledged the threats of anti-unification factions by taking over former US military bases in Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Guam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Turkey & Germany. UEG also formed strategic military alliances with several national armies of nations that supported the world government to contain anti-unification factions’ armed threats.
Anti-unification masses were made up by various groups & not restricted to any ideology, apart from the same nemesis they faced, namely UEG. However, followed by UEG proclamation, the anti-unification forces banded together with funds supplied by intricate but shadowy network of sympathizers. These forces grew large enough to launch several daring attacks against UEG targets, armed with rigged Russian fighters & weaponries bought from black markets. The United Earth Government, found itself against relentless & resourceful opponents. Anti-unification forces gained little during the first months of their operations against UEG, however, the assassination of Prime Minister Harlan J. Niven became a highlight in their struggle. The second most successful attempt was the hijacking of a newly constructed Oberth class space destroyer, but it was foiled by the legendary late Admiral Henry J. Gloval.
It was not long before top secret information of Robotechnology leaked over to anti-unification forces. As UNDF finalized the VF-X-1 variable experimental fighter (powered by alien energy source – Protoculture – unknown by its original name) programme, the first Robotechnology breakthrough with the usage of new thermonuclear fusion turbine engines were applied the first breed of Robotech variable mecha, VF-0 Phoenix fighter. The technological marvel, code-named Overtechnology, was somehow leaked over to anti-unification forces shortly before its application in UNDF mechas.
Anti-unification forces, operated deep within Ural Mountains, launched their first operational SV-51 variable fighter one month before VF-0 Phoenix fighters were rolled out from production lines. In July 2007, a top secret operation was carried out by UNDF over alien artifacts in the remote Caribbean region, which pitted its conventional fighters against the deadly SV-51 fighters with grievous results on the side of UNDF, even though UNDF began to deploy the VF-0s. Buoyed by their newfound victories, anti-unification forces decided to launch an all out attack to the site where SDF-1 was being rebuilt, the Macross Island. The first wave of the the assault were repelled as SV-51 fighters were no match for the more advanced VF-1 Valkyrie fighters stationed aboard SDF-1, & many anti-unification conventional fighters fell prey to new line of air defense destroids. Later that year, UNDF task forces located the rebel hide-outs through out Middle East, Central Asia & former Soviet republics & waged a bloody campaign to wipe out the rebels. By 2008 CE, the anti-unification forces only existed on paper.
It worth mentioned that UEG, through its propaganda arm, used the defunct anti-unification forces as the scapegoat to explain the disappearance of SDF-1 & Macross island following First Robotech War in 2009 CE, plus 4 years earlier in 2005 CE, UEG blamed the same group as responsible for destruction of Mars Base Sara, in which the anti-unification forces never actually took part.
By then, UEG & its military arm, UNDF were truly the symbol of unity & defender for mankind, ready to face & defeat challenges from hostile forces, from within or any alien forces foolish enough to trample the people of Earth. Or so they believed.
As readers may noted out, humankind history a decade prior to SDF-1 arrival were marked by many incessant warfare that threatened the survival of Homo Sapiens as a species as old prejudices on racial lines & old-notions of nationalistic pride, religious extremism clouded judgments of political leaders & their followers of that era. An era where ethnic cleansing & outright cold-hearted brutalities were the norm, one must say, humankind had degenerated beneath its destined evolutionary cycle.
Post arrival of SDF-1 marked the first concerted willingness of human race to forgo racial, religion, nationhood, ideologies differences over national unity. Even though there were those whose actions nearly undermined the effort, peace were brought upon a planet upon which humanity was spawned. Thus, UNDF, the first of the long line of Robotech Defenders was given the very defence of Terra & her citizens against the impending invasion from the Zentraedi.