The Rise of the American Empire is a story about the transformation of the United States of America into the American Empire and the consequences. Comments are welcomed.
Section 1: President Bush gains More PowerEdit
After the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the Pentagon and the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, President George W. Bush's popularity soared, when he talked of halting the terrorists and of insuring public security in the planet. Bush, with the approval of 80% of the American population, proposed the Patriot Act to Congress, which:
- Suspended certain parts of the Bill of Rights, by restricting freedom of speech and the press, severely curtailing freedom of privacy, authorizing government interference into private phone conversations, severe restriction of public communications, and the right to arrest and detain certain people without trial, suspected of terrorism or other hostile activities.
- Granted the military the power to station troops in houses, to use force against civilians suspected of cooperating with terrorists, and of using the press to present it's views.
- Extended the power of the president, by granting him absolute authority over the deployment and discipline of the armed forces, by allowing him to call and dissolve Congress at will, to arrest civilians without trial, and issue executive orders that made laws during the duration of the absence of Congress. The President could now declare war and make peace without approval of the Congress, and could sign and implement treaties at will.
Congress, dominated by the Anti-Terrorist Republican Party, voted for the bill by a margin of 365-60 in the House on 1 December 2001 and by 65-35 in the Senate on 14 December 2001. President Bush signed the Bill on 24 December 2001. The authority of the military and Presidency was drastically increased, at the expense of the Congress.
Section 2: War in Afghanistan and further Political EventsEdit
President Bush immediately authorized an invasion of Afghanistan, the base of Al-Qaeda and the Taliban government, by 40,000 American troops, using his newly expanded military authority. In January 2002, Taliban Afghanistan was invaded by American forces. Immediately, Bin-Laden was forced into hiding, and by March, the Taliban government had been overthrown, due to a combination of American military action and of insurgency actions by the Afghan population.
Meanwhile in the United States, President Bush made use of his expanded domestic authority. He issued an executive order that established the American Communications Office, the superior presidential-controlled body to the Federal Communications Commission. The Office was authorized "to regulate and monitor private and public communications, to control the press and distribution of information, to arrest and detain anyone critical of the government". This authority extended over movies, television, newspapers, and the radio. Bush also established, by executive order, the American Judicial Board on Terrorism, a judicial body charged with handling and presenting cases related to terrorists and other international threats to American safety and security.
The Supreme Court soon declared that the actions of Congress and of Bush were unconstitutional, citing "interference in the balance of the powers". The Court over-rode all of Bush's executive orders concerning the war and terrorism, as well the American Patriot Act that had extended the authority of the president and military. Congress immediately responded by passing the Judicial and Executive Relations Act, which President Bush signed:
- This Act amended the Constitution directly by severely curtailing the Supreme Court's powers. The Court now required the approval of the President in order to over-ride laws passed by Congress. The Court could no longer handle cases tied to the President, and had to request Presidential approval for all cases.
- The President could now appoint and dismiss members of the Supreme Court at will, without requiring the approval of the Senate. The President could also set judicial procedure and could disband the Court in dire emergencies.
- The American Patriot Act and all executive orders issued by the President that the Court over-rode are re-instated, and a amendment is passed stating the Act cannot be over-ridden except by the approval of two-thirds of Congress and the signature of the President.
- All Executive Orders are now stated to be in the sole domain of the President of the United States. Only he could modify or repeal orders. Congress could no longer over-ride executive orders issued by the President through use of conflicting laws.
This Act not only severely curtailed the judicial branch's independence and powers, it also increased the authority of both Congress and the President. The Constitution in itself was severely weakened, and the Bill of Rights was broken up further. The United States was on the way to becoming a dictatorship.
Section 3: Increased Terrorist ActionEdit
Despite the occupation of most of Afghanistan, the defeat of the Taliban, and the throwing-into hiding of Bin Laden, terrorist actions by the defeated, but not severely weakened, Al Qaeda continued. After 9/11, President Bush, using the Authority granted to him by the Patriot Act, issued a executive order that placed severe restrictions on air travel and introduced tougher security procedures. Despite Bush's efforts, the terrorists improved their cover significantly, and more incidents were reported. On 14 March 2002, 2 planes were hijacked and destroyed by terrorists, taking the lives of nearly 150 American civilians. Congress and Bush responded with the Airport Security Acts:
- More advanced detection techniques and longer searching routines were introduced on all passengers, even children and elderly people, in order to root out potential terrorists.
- Severe restrictions were placed on the amount of people allowed aboard each plane, as well restrictions on luggage and on other materials (including computers, music players, etc.)
- The deployment of at least twenty air-space flight officers and agents was authorized on all vessels, in order to increase public security and reduce the like-hood of terrorist hijacking of planes.
- The President was granted the power to deploy the military to take control of airports, in order to insure efficient detection of terrorists and reduce danger posed by them.
With the introduction and implementation of these acts, terrorist actions declined by at least 54%. Security rose over 48%, and more people felt safer when traveling on airplanes. However, the popularity of the government sunk below 50%, as a vast majority of liberals, libertarians, etc. complained of the increasing power of the government. Conservatives applauded the efforts of the government, hoping for more advanced security techniques and reduction of the terrorist threat.
Section 4: War in Afghanistan progressesEdit
The war in Afghanistan progressed, but slowly. In November 2002, Bin Laden narrowly avoided capture by American forces. Thus, President Bush reorganized the military command and introduced a new strategy to prosecuting the war. All the while, the terrorists began switching from airplane hijacking to hijacking of major banks and schools. They held Howard University, Harvard University, the Bank of America, and several other important places hostage from December 2002 until March 2003, killing several civilians and destroying large amounts of property. They were eventually defeated, at the cost of 1,100 lives, but President Bush used this as evidence to further increase his power, by means of the Congress-approved Patriot Act Amendments:
- The President of the United States could now appoint and dismiss government secretaries, major members of the President's staff, and lower court judges without the approval or consent of the Senate.
- The President's executive orders could now issue regulations pertaining to the operations of the Federal Communications Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, the Inter-state Transportation Commission, and the Congressional Budgetary Office.
- The President could now fill the seats of Senators and Representatives when they died, were impeached, or resigned.
- The President could issue, modify, and repeal the budget of the United States at will, without the approval of Congress. The President was also granted the sole power over the modification and collection of taxes.
With these expanded powers, the President of the United States was surpassing his constitutional mandate. It was only a short time before Bush became similar to a "president-dictator", like Saddam Hussein.
Section 5: Invasion of Iraq and More Power for the PresidentEdit
In April 2003, Iraq was invaded, by direct order of President Bush, due to terrorist "stockpiling of chemical weapons". Although no such weapons existed, Bush was supported by Congress, and Saddam Hussein was driven out of office. In December, the former Iraqi dictator was captured. Soon, Iraqi insurgent movements arose against the American occupation. American casualties climbed into the tens of thousands every passing month. Bush decided to use this to increase his power even further. In July 2003, Congress granted Bush the powers which would make him a president-dictator:
- The President could now suspend or prolong presidential elections indefinitely. He was now allowed to serve a unlimited number of four-year terms. The President could also modify election procedure.
- The President could now modify or repeal laws passed by the Congress. He could also over-ride any actions of Congress and could promulgate, modify, and repeal Congressional procedure.
- The President could appoint and dismiss directly the Speaker of the House and President pro tempore of the Senate. He could also appoint and dismiss the Senior Leader of the Senate, and the Senior Whip of the House.
- The President could issue executive proclamations with the full force of law over the government, the states, and the military. He could also modify or repeal such laws at will.
- The President could lead the country for any period of time without Congress. Congress could no longer censor or impeach the President without the approval of the President himself. He could also grant sentences, override impeachments of other officials, and punish members of Congress for any "reasonable offence".
Of course, President Bush signed this emergency powers act. He was now effectively a presidential dictator, with supreme powers over Congress, the military, and the courts.
Section 6: Attempted "Liberal rebellion" and Proclamation of the American EmpireEdit
Throughout 2004, progress occurred in both Iraq and Afghanistan. President Bush, now effectively a near-absolute dictator, ruling with supreme power over Congress, the Supreme Court, and the military, authorized the execution of Saddam Hussein without fair trial. Hussein was executed by hanging in February 2004. In Afghanistan, due to aggressive search strategies and full-scale scouting, Bin-Laden was finally captured in May 2004. Bush had issued a executive order in July 2003 mandating the immediate hanging of Bin Laden once he was caught. The soldiers compiled, and hung Bin Laden immediately after capturing him. His body was later presented to Bush, who had it burned in public.
Soon after the execution and burning of Bin Laden, a organized liberal movement was established, to oppose President Bush and Congress. It was named the United States Constitutional Restoration Movement (USCRM). A more ruthless group, named the Movement to Overthrow the President (MTOP), was formed, to overthrow the President or force him out of office. Bush used this as his excuse to have the leaders of USCRM and MTOP arrested. After a failed assassination attempt by MTOP fanatics, Bush finally had their organizations officially banned, and then called Congress to a emergency meeting.
In the meeting, Bush himself delivered the speech, on 4 January 2005. In it, Bush accused the USCRM and MTOP of trying to provoke a "Liberal rebellion". He announced that MTOP members had tried killing him. He then stated that their leaders had been captured and their organizations destroyed. And with this, he announced that it was time for a new government, one with efficient organization and power:
In order to ensure the Security and continuing Stability, the United States, will be reorganized, into the first American Empire! For a safe and secure Society! One that will last for the next three hundred years! A powerful government! A Empire ruled by a American Emperor, with absolute powers, for life, and assisted by a American Parliament. I will lead this Empire as absolute Emperor for life, to dreams beyond imagining.
The opposition in Congress, the minority Democrats, reeled. There would be direction to Congress, not legislation by the Congress. The ideals of the American Constitution and Bill of Rights would be no more. Justice and freedom would be seriously harmed.
Section 7: Reorganization of a Democratic Republic into a Autocratic EmpireEdit
Immediately after the proclamation of the existence of the American Empire, numerous changes in the fabric of the former American Republic occurred. These changes also were symbolic, initiated by Emperor George I to purge any remnant of the United States. The Constitution of the United States and Bill of Rights were replaced with the Imperial Constitution. The Congress of the United States, now virtually powerless, was reorganized into the Imperial Parliament, a ceremonial institution that came to represent the last remnants of the United States government. The Executive Office of the President was renamed the Imperial Chancellory. The Cabinet of the United States was re-organized into the Imperial Council of Ministers. The Supreme Court was renamed the Imperial Court. The Treasury of the United States became the Imperial Treasury. The Congressional Budget Office and Presidential Budget Office were combined to form the Imperial Budgetary Office. The Federal Communications Commission and American Communications Office were combined to form the Imperial Communications Bureau. The United States Army, United States Navy, and United States Air Force became the Imperial Army, Imperial Navy, and Imperial Air Force. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency, and the Secret Service were combined to form the Imperial Intelligence Agency. All seals and flags of the United States were replaced with specially-designed Imperial seals and flags. The Star-Spangled Banner anthem was replaced with the Emperor's Anthem. Within days, there were few traces left to reveal there had ever been a United States of America.
The newly proclaimed American Empire consolidated central control. The fifty states of the Union were replaced by four governorships: the Extra-Continental Governorship, the Western Governorship, the Central Governorship, and the Eastern Governorship. Each Governorship was supervised by a Imperial Governor, appointed and dismissed by the American Emperor at will. Each Governor had more power then the governors of the former States of the Union. Each Imperial Governor had absolute authority over the government they were assigned to. They held complete control of the military forces within their jurisdiction. Imperial Governors could proclaim martial law as fit. They could override the local legislatures and police forces at will. Governors could also issue decrees, that, while compliant with Imperial law, held legal force in their territories, and could not be modified or repealed except by the Governor himself, or by the Emperor.
Section 8: The Oppression of the EmpireEdit
After the American Empire was firmly entrenched, it immediately began a campaign to make it's rule felt. Laws were passed that would allow the Empire to take any action necessary to it's survival, in effect, making it a autocratic monarchy. The Emergency Military Powers Act granted the Military powers beyond normal, allowing it effectively oppress society and to use martial law unchallenged. The Capital Powers Act allowed the Empire to arrest, detain, and execute anyone it deemed threatening to the government or the safety of "the people". The Act also authorized "extremely lethal and dangerous" means to punish terrorists and criminals, even if it meant killing civilians in the process. A final act, the Proper Enforcement and Security Act, allowed the Imperial Government to use any means against the people at large, in order to preserve "security, peace, and fair justice". After this act, the Imperial Parliament would rarely ever meet again, summoned once every year for a ceremonial speech by the Emperor.
Within a couple of months after the proclamation of the Empire, the Emperor announced that more troops would be moved into both Afghanistan and Iraq, to "ensure the continuing security, stability, and relative peace". A Imperial military proclamation was issued, that granted these troops all the powers that the Military also wielded in the Empire itself. Immediately, American troops began their oppression. They arrested and detained hundreds of thousands of Iraqi and Afghani citizens without trial, destroyed entire villages, and plundered numerous farms throughout both Iraq and Afghanistan. All of this was "in the name of security and stability".
The Empire also undertook brutal actions in it's home territories. The new American Emperor Bush was a ardent opponent of abortion, gay rights, and other issues he deemed "subversive". As a result, laws were passed and actions undertaken to openly reflect and advocate this viewpoint:
One law, the Homosexual Restrictions and Opposition Act, is widely considered an example of the Empire's extreme cruelty. This act prohibited gay marriage, outlawed any homosexual public assemblies or meetings, and openly advocated violence against homosexual communities. The act also prohibited "sexual-change therapy" practices. Prohibitions on inter-sexual intercourse was also laid. This act thus directly targeted and discriminated lesbians, gays, bisexuals, and transgenders. From then on, violence and wide-scale raids directed at these homosexual communities became common all over the Empire's territory. In June 2006, a amendment to the Act was passed, which legalized the use of priests to "re-convert" homosexuals, and also severely curtailed the civil rights of homosexual people.
A second law, which, while not considered as oppressive, is the Abortion Criminalization Act. This act criminalized the use of abortion, even in emergencies or important emotional or physical situations. The Act mandated immediate death for any pregnant mother trying to, or having committed, this act. Death is also required for the doctor and/or nurses who perform and/or assist in the abortion. The Act also outlawed any public assemblies or meetings which openly supported abortion.
Then, the Empire began a policy of racial discrimination and cruelty. The Asian Peoples Discrimination and Oppression Act directly targeted Asian-American and Asian communities all across the Empire. Their civil rights were extremely curtailed, any political or public assemblies by Asians or Asian-Americans were outlawed, and violence was openly advocated against Asian-American communities. Eventually, hundreds of thousands of Asian-Americans would be huddled into "internment camps", and then killed, right under the noses of the public. Another law, the Foreign Cultures Restrictions and Limitations Act, placed numerous restrictions or official impediments on the public expression of European, Caribbean, African, or Asian culture. The act severely curtailed the civil rights of European immigrants, banned them from holding jobs or public offices, and instated a curfew.
The Empire's oppression then extended to media, entertainment, and communications all across the country. In January 2007, the Emperor issued the State Media Proclamation, which granted the Imperial Communications Bureau absolute control over all the media and entertainment in the country, thus eliminating freedom of expression, freedom of the press, and freedom of speech. Immediately, more Imperial oppression was felt. The major television networks NBC, CBS, ABC, and Fox were combined into the Imperial News and Entertainment Network (INEN), which was filled with Imperial lies, Imperial propaganda, and state-approved content. The government arrested and imprisoned anyone who criticized the government in any way. All of the radio stations and newspapers in the country were also seized by the government.
Meanwhile, by 2009 large-scale peaceful protest movements, criticizing the Empire's actions and oppression, had popped up across the country, in the cities of New York, San Francisco, Denver, Boston, and Las Vegas. Although the Empire easily eliminated the New York, San Francisco, and Denver movements, the Boston and Las Vegas movements were harder to deal with. They eventually began committing small acts of sabotage in Imperial installations, while in public broadcasting their opposition through use of the media and through wide-scale public assemblies. Emperor George I was tired of the opposition, and ordered the nuclear bombardment of Boston and Las Vegas, in order to eliminate both protest movements. On 12 January 2010, this occurred, and at least 800,000 innocent civilians, as well 100,000 protesters, were killed instantly by the two nuclear bombs. Both Boston and Las Vegas were almost completely wiped off. Both protest movements were completely destroyed. After this action, no more public opposition or protests would occur in the Empire.