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Old 06-18-2019, 05:48 PM
guncrazy guncrazy is offline
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Default America after the Thanksgiving Massacre

We are playing in a modified version where Russian China and Mexico had invaded the US during the Twilight War the European theater remains unchanged. I am trying to figure out if the CivGov and MilGov would be enemies to the point of going to war and starting a civil war. What is the relationship of these two governments? I know neither recognize constitutional authority to govern but are they enemies? How should I handle a former MilGov (one of the PCs) soldier in a CivGov enclave in New Mexico (slightly modified version of t he back story) the only enclave this far west. Are these two government hostile to each other? And yes New America is the enemies of all
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Old 06-18-2019, 07:47 PM
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I've usually treated them as "rivals" - not actually enemies but definitely not friends either. They are competing against each other for leadership of the nation and could be viewed in simplistic terms, as two different political parties competing against each other - not enemies, not friends, they are rivals.

But this gives you a lot of opportunity to vary the relationship in different parts of the country. In some areas they may actually be friendly with each other and even offer limited assistance to each other. In another area they may not actively assist each other but they don't actively interfere with each other either, an "uneasy alliance" against a greater enemy sort of situation.
In other places they may be directly competing against each other for resources and so they do come to blows every now and then and in some locations they may be actively seeking to eliminate each other.

A lot of this comes down to the type of people in charge of the local groups. Certain personalities might only be interested in promoting their own group's welfare and thus consider the other 'gov' not just a rival but a potential threat. In some locations the leaders of the local groups may actually be friendly and may promote working towards common goals rather than fighting among themselves.

It does mean more book-keeping for the Referee but it makes the situation between MilGov and CivGov a lot more dynamic and makes it feel 'alive'. The PCs will not know how the two 'govs' relate to each other in a particular region without getting some intel, or going to see it for themselves. It also means there are great opportunities for the PCs to act as intermediaries and even peace-makers between the two 'govs'.
For me, this sort of thing makes everything a lot more interesting.
The PCs become troubleshooters and even diplomats for the greater good of the USA.
Promoting the idea that MilGov and CivGov are Americans and they should work together to promote the recovery of America for all Americans - there's a long term campaign in that!
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Old 06-19-2019, 07:56 PM
guncrazy guncrazy is offline
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I had a thought about doing this, one of the PCs is a Marine Sniper and Force Recon who "deserted" from MilGov at the characters start. So she would have some knowledge of what the situation is like.
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Old 06-20-2019, 08:43 AM
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I had a thought about doing this, one of the PCs is a Marine Sniper and Force Recon who "deserted" from MilGov at the characters start. So she would have some knowledge of what the situation is like.
to make it even crazier. have someone who defects from CivGov to MilGov run into them as a NPC.
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Old 06-20-2019, 09:13 AM
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Should PCs even know about the split? It's not like there's any better news available than rumour and what the military is passing on....
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Old 06-21-2019, 06:19 PM
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Should PCs even know about the split? It's not like there's any better news available than rumour and what the military is passing on....
I would think they would right?
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Old 06-21-2019, 07:59 PM
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Why should they? As shown in most of the rumour tables there's all sorts of false and half truths out there. Take a look at Red Star, Lone Star for a specific example - the PCs had heard Texas had been invaded by Soviets and the state had broken away, but the idea was dismissed as too unbelievable.
Ruins of Warsaw introduces the PCs to the first indication all is not well at home with the CIA agent and his loyalty oaths. No real explanation given about them though.

So why should PCs have more information about the world beyond their immediate line of sight than anyone else? Communications have effectively broken down as evidenced by the slow spread of the Omega orders in Going Home. XI Corps didn't even have coms with some of it's own elements, so why should news from home be known by those outside the upper ranks and a handful of signallers (who've probably been ordered to stay quiet to avoid "issues" amongst the soldiers)?
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Last edited by Legbreaker; 06-22-2019 at 07:42 PM.
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Old 06-21-2019, 10:37 PM
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So why should PCs have more information about the world beyond their immediate line of sight than anyone else? Communications have effectively broken down as evidenced by the slow spread of the Omega orders in Going Home.
According to the 1996 CIA World FactBook (mirror) the US had nearly 5,000 FM and AM radio stations and over 500 million receivers. According to a copy of an old Usenet post the US also had over 600,000 licensed hams (about 3 per 1k population). There were also thousands of RadioShack stores in the US in the 90s. Every long haul truck was also likely to have a CB radio. This is a long way of saying the US is/was lousy with radios. Even if you want to assume the TDM EMPs destroyed some ridiculously large percentage of electronics there's still many tens of millions of functional radios and salvageable bits of gear. It does not take huge infrastructure to conduct long range communications via radio.

Every ham and electronics geek would have broken out (or fixed) their radios as soon as the dust settled after TDM. They would be crucial for local governments to communicate with neighbors and state governments with telephone systems down. Governments of any size would want to get broadcast radio stations back online. There would be millions of radios in people's hands, many battery powered, for those governments to broadcast emergency information and civil defense type pieces.

This is all in addition to more primitive muscle powered couriers. Mail service would be another vital government function, even if it was just passing coordination messages between local governments or groups in power. Who delivers the mail would likely be who you paid your apocalypse taxes to, either MilGov or CivGov. Part of governing a region is maintaining lines of communication in that region.

Between millions of radios and bike/horse/foot couriers and/or mail carriers, only the most remote or inaccessible parts of the country wouldn't know about MilGov and CivGov. Both would put effort into propaga...advertising campaigns to make the case for their legitimacy and loyalty to them.
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Old 06-22-2019, 07:19 PM
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I would think that for US forces in Europe, they would be unlikely to know much about the MilGov/CivGov split because the flow of information would be strictly controlled by the military heirachy. Those personnel in HQ and signals units that might hear about it would probably filter the information to support their own beliefs, meaning that even if higher HQ wanted the news to get out, some junior officer/NCO/OR might not pass it on because they disagree with it. Or the reverse could be the situation, HQ doesn't want it to get out but somebody believes the troops should know.

But I also think that once they return to the USA they would learn about it. Maybe not quickly, but sooner or later they would hear talk or even be direcly approached by people wishing to know where they stand on the issue or directly courting them to one side or another.

I can imagine both sides playing the 'political campaign' game to woo people to their side and using various methods to let people know who to throw their support behind. It may not be 'representatives' travelling the campaign trail but all the other methods of advertising their positions/claims etc. etc. would be used.
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Old 06-22-2019, 11:16 PM
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Default "So, G.I. Joe, which American government are you being sent here to die for?"

Bash raises some really good points, considering the situation in CONUS, and I tend to agree with SSC's assessment of the military. Not having served, I don't have first-hand experience, but a governmental schism seems like news that would spread quickly through the institutional rumor mill. I can't see the military hierarchy being able to contain news of that magnitude indefinitely. Not that it would be common knowledge among the lower ranks, but I imagine that the knowledge would be pretty widespread scuttlebutt in the ETO by Y2K.

IIRC, there were a couple of shiploads of troops deployed to Europe after the schism. If that was indeed the case, I don't see how as how the troops on board those ships could be prevented, in practice, from sharing the big news with the troops already deployed in the ETO. Word would eventually spread.

Oh, and I just though of WTO propaganda! Someone like a "Moscow Molly", for example, taunting U.S. troops in the ETO with news of the US government split (see the post title). Yeah, so even if the US military could keep the news from the rank and file- a premise that I find somewhat doubtful- the Soviets would loudly spill the beans to sap American and NATO morale (via radio broadcasts, fliers, released POWs, etc.).

Yeah, the more I think about it, the more likely it seems that, by 2000, the split would more or less be common knowledge anywhere in the world that significant bodies of U.S. troops are present.
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Old 06-23-2019, 08:17 AM
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I agree with Stainless, except that I think troops returning to CONUS would find out about the split rather quickly, and possibly be aggressively be recruited or poached by both sides.
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Old 06-23-2019, 08:36 AM
guncrazy guncrazy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StainlessSteelCynic View Post
I would think that for US forces in Europe, they would be unlikely to know much about the MilGov/CivGov split because the flow of information would be strictly controlled by the military heirachy. Those personnel in HQ and signals units that might hear about it would probably filter the information to support their own beliefs, meaning that even if higher HQ wanted the news to get out, some junior officer/NCO/OR might not pass it on because they disagree with it. Or the reverse could be the situation, HQ doesn't want it to get out but somebody believes the troops should know.

But I also think that once they return to the USA they would learn about it. Maybe not quickly, but sooner or later they would hear talk or even be direcly approached by people wishing to know where they stand on the issue or directly courting them to one side or another.

I can imagine both sides playing the 'political campaign' game to woo people to their side and using various methods to let people know who to throw their support behind. It may not be 'representatives' travelling the campaign trail but all the other methods of advertising their positions/claims etc. etc. would be used.
Yes this was my thought as well, the PCs have been back in the US for about 5 months since before our campaign began, I figured by then they would have knowledge of the split especially since one of the PCs was directly under MilGov command until she deserted. Again this is also a slightly modified timeline where not only Russia but China and NK also declared war against the US. Also the PCs are currently in New Mexico at the ONLY CivGov enclave in the remnants of a semi major city (forgive my lack of southwest knowledge). I thought this would be a good point to begin the bigger picture "quests". The PCs have left this rundown dying town by effectlive fighting off a rogue army brigade with the cities help only to be kicked out because they were blamed for the attack in the first place lol.

So now they reached this city with actual electricity but limited water supply. I have also been using NPCs to relay bits of information on the two governments.
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Old 06-24-2019, 08:04 PM
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I agree with Stainless, except that I think troops returning to CONUS would find out about the split rather quickly, and possibly be aggressively be recruited or poached by both sides.
The way I've always read Howling Wilderness (and the other books) is troops returning to CONUS were largely aboard military/military contracted ships and landing in military controlled ports. This to me says MilGov. While troops would definitely hear about the split, it would likely be from the MilGov perspective/narrative. Troops joining up with CivGov after their return to CONUS would be marked as deserters by the military and MilGov.

Another point I think is interesting is both governments are going to bill themselves as "The United States Government". We use terms from the books but people in the T2K universe probably wouldn't. Well, CivGov might call MilGov...MilGov as a negative connotation for propaganda purposes. So when troops do get back to CONUS they're going to be presented with two groups calling themselves the USG.

Thinking about that, maybe troops and civilians would refer to the governments by their respective capitals, Colorado Springs and Omaha. Civilians would probably refer to their chosen side as the USG and the other side as something derisive.
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Old 06-25-2019, 07:42 PM
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That's a very good point bash, one that I'm definitely guilty of. Both sides would be claiming to be the legitimate US Government and wouldn't be using the labels we use to describe themselves.
I do like the idea of the military calling the civilians "CivGov" as an easy reference but also as a point of disdain. I don't doubt that the civilian government would have similar labels but I don't think "MilGov" would carry the same level of disdain or negativity. I'm inclined to think that they would call the military government something along the lines of rogue elements (or something of that nature) to reinforce their rejection of the military claim to leadership.
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Old 06-26-2019, 10:25 AM
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I would take a page from the HBO Movie By Dawn's Early Light which is based on 1983's novel Trinity's Child by William Prochnau.

The President is presumed dead and a successor is sworn in. He with the military advisers, so this can the basics for the military government.

Meanwhile the original President come back from the dead so to speak and tries issuing order but people believe it is a fake. The people who strongly support the president are people who have actually seen him or talk to him.

In both cases you have troops following orders because they come from someone they trust.
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Old 06-27-2019, 02:21 AM
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I think the beauty of this specific situation is that all the views so far expressed can actually be accommodated in the one narrative. The US is a large country with a huge population so all of those ideas could exists in pockets around the nation and even within US personnel (civilian and military) abroad.
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Old 06-27-2019, 03:44 PM
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I think the beauty of this specific situation is that all the views so far expressed can actually be accommodated in the one narrative. The US is a large country with a huge population so all of those ideas could exists in pockets around the nation and even within US personnel (civilian and military) abroad.
This weeks game the PCs explored the city and are finally in semi civilization (the players were in dire straights at game start one PC and 2 NPCs killed) of course the one player being the player he is has his character walk into a CivGov enclave (the only one in New Mexico or out west at all) with his MilGov fatigues, gets spotted and is confronted when alone. What does she do? Starts a melee lol. Granted she is Marine Force Recon and a term of SEALs but not a smart thing to do. Luckily the rest of the group smoothed things over haha. But yeah right now I have them doing some "quests" for the city like getting the water supply flowing again, clearing unsecured parts of the city of gangs and marauders etc etc. Then go from there. We are also playing in 2025 so the timeline is slightly altered as well as modern equipment.
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