The Keystone Division after WW3

Russian 2s6 SP-AAA

NOTICE - This is a game. This is not reality. It does not represent my world view. It is only a "what if" scenario. If you are offended, or can't tell fantasy from reality, that's your problem, so read no further, and don't bust my chops.

This campaign is based on TWILIGHT 2000, by Game Designers Workshop. No challenge to, or infringement of, copyrights is implied, or intended.

End of Disclaimer


The World:
It is the year 2003, and the world has quickly become a terrible, ruined place. A short but nasty conflict began between several of the Arab states in 1998, and the problems spilled over to the rest of the globe. Taking the Coalition's stance on the last Gulf War as a sign of approval from God, Iraq again attempts it's bid for local supremacy. Many of the former Soviet states joined with the US, Germany, and Britain, and fought a Second Gulf War against Iraq. In retaliation, Iraq struck back with a motley assortment of chemical and biological weapons. Some tactical employment of the bio/chem weapons happened, but the true target was far more helpless -- European population centers were particularly hard hit.

a bombed out house

France scorned her former NATO allies, and was joined by Spain, and fought for a time against Germany, Britain, and The Netherlands. Italy and Greece fought over their part of the Mediteranean, and when Greece was beaten, Turkey broke its non-agression pact with Italy, and imposed a harsh regime over both conquered countries. The Balkans were further ruined by skirmishes, city against city, street against street, neighbor against neighbor. Eastern Europe remained relatively stable, yet suffered for a time from problems spilling over from one neighboring country to another.

The former Soviet Republics were plunged into a long civil war, but supplies ran out at about the same time the trained soldiery became extinct. The Civil War soon faded into local anarchy. China's vast armies attacked its smaller bordering countries, and established a cruel reign of terror throughout SE Asia. Africa, as a whole, became continent-wide a game of survival, with few winners, and many, many dead...

The SKS Carbine, available at a modest cost throughout the US before the war, became a symbol of honest citizens resistance against marauders.

The United States:
In the other Hemisphere, Native American peoples at first resisted, then openly rebelled against Canada or America, and later these rebellions accidentally led to a fateful armed confrontation between Canada and The United States, at Buffalo, N.Y. Canada's small military contingent overran the scratch force at the border, and made it's way east into New York, and south into Pennsylvania.

With so many US divisions committed abroad, the Federacion de Sud (Mexico, along with some Central and South American States), saw their opportunity and attacked northward, some Nicaraguan and Mexican units making it as far as Maryland and Ohio before vanishing. Small scale terrorism became an everyday event in large metropolitan centers in the US, until some Arab splinter group (naturally, they all took credit) bombed the World Trade Center again, only this time with a nuclear device. Much of New York City ceased to exist.

Syrian BMPs

The old Pro-Western alliances in the Middle East, always shaky, crumbled in pieces and were lost to the fray. Whole divisions were committed to the war, and were vaporised. In the eyes of many US citizens, the continued terrorist attacks on American soil warrented a more decisive solution. After much debate the US retaliated, at first using a few scattered nuclear strikes from subs in the Mediterranean and in the Gulf. The sparseness of the attack was intended to avoid an all-out exchange, but in the Arab's eyes, it was perceived as a weak act of desperation. The Arab nations struck back, unleashing furious, coordinated terrorist attacks on US cities. There seemed little else for the US Joint Chiefs to do, other than to "push the Big Red Button". Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Jordan were literally erased from the world map.

Vietnam held out for 15 months against the PRC forces.

The Orient had been unusually quiet through the conflict. This ended rather abruptly when China struck quickly and violently south, overrunning Vietnam, Burma, Laos, Thailand, and Cambodia. The move was costly in terms of Chinese lives and equipment, but it settled who was the biggest kid on the block after just one scuffle.

As they were the last major powers in their respective hemispheres, the US and China found themselves on even shakier ground than they had been traditionally. A series of incidents in several port cities on the West Coast of the US led to a breakdown in relations, and finally, conflict.

Several container ships, their true identities concealed through multiple false registries, entered every major port city in CA, WA, and OR. The containers contained units of the Jin Tan, a tough breed of do-anything commandos. The Jin Tan ran rampant through the ports of entry, paving the way for a larger invasion by main-force Chinese units. The US retaliated by nuking every military and industrial center in China. As in many other such exchanges, some Chinese nuclear missile bases were left untouched, and China retaliated against the US.

Finally, all of the combatants simply gave up, and focused on rebuilding. Thousands of years of civilization were destroyed in a few short years. For nearly a year now, the actual war has mostly cooled down into skirmishes, infiltration raids, and general unrest.

NVGs were among the 1000s of other things fried by EMP.  A working set often sold for $10000 when they were available.

Now medical supplies, vehicles, and heavy weapons are in short supply, airpower is a thing of the past, and central governments barely exist, if they exist at all. Gasoline has been almost completely replaced by methanol or ethanol. The small trickle of petroleum that becomes available on the market is ridiculously high priced, and is used for lubricating engines, rather than as fuel.

Electromagnetic Pulse has destroyed the internal components of most digital technological niceties such as computers, television, and medical equipment. Few things more complex than a transistor radio have survived, and even if part of a system was immune to EMP, other components that were not are now fried and cannot be replaced. Gold, and/or barter for trade goods is the ususal means of exchange, since faith in governments and their currencies is at an all-time low.

US areas targeted by nuclear/chemical/biological attacks

Some areas of the United States were destroyed in the initial nuclear exchange. NYC, Wash. DC, Chicago, LA and most other large metropolitan areas fall into this catagory. Many areas were targetted by military powers. However, a suprising percentage of the larger population centers were attacked by terrorist organizations who had been in place all along, but in dormancy, waiting to strike. Other more remote areas such as Montana, the Dakotas, and Alaska were largely untouched. Finally some areas, including Pennsylvania and the majority of the Eastern Seaboard of the US, fall in somewhere between these two extremes.


Pennsylvania in Brief:
Pennsylvania, the Keystone of the 13 Original Colonies, was actually no less important in modern times than it was earlier in the history of the US. When Pennsylvania was in her death throes, so was the US. Philadelphia, once a symbol of our Country and our Freedom lies a radioactive wreck, as does most of Eastern PA.

The larger cities of Scranton-Wilkes Barre, Harrisburg, Lancaster, York, and Reading, although not nuclear targets, are in anarchy, and are nearly as devastated as The City of Brotherly Love. Numerous militia groups operate from the sparsely populated Northern Tier, and rumor has it that in Pittsburgh, real gasoline can be purchased, and electric service can be be had, from a certain syndicate of businessmen. There is some manufacturing going on, but it is geared to military and agricultural needs.


Highlights of the World War 3 Chronology:

JAN thru MAR: possible US-Iraq showdown averted.

JUN: Iraq attacks Kuwait.

JUL: World Trade Center bombing.

AUG: Organized Crime, Terrorism, and Mass Rioting sweep thru several of the former-Soviet Republics.

SEP: US Units, including elements of the 1st CAV, 2nd ARMORED, and 101st AIRMOBILE deploy to Saudi Arabia. They are joined by a Coalition of forces from 8 nations, including England, Germany, the Ukraine, and others. The Ukrainian contingent is rather small, and the Lithuanian and Russian forces back out at the last minute, citing "immediate internal needs"

OCT: Several of the Native American Nations author initiatives for greater local control of their affairs.

FEB: The Coalition's liberation of Kuwait begins. After 3 weeks, the Iraqis flee the country.

MAR: The US-Iraqi War is over. Some US forces remain at readiness inside Saudi Arabia, while most return to the US.

MAR: Several of the former Soviet Republics wage a series of brushfire wars against each other.

The Russians began tanks and IFVs towing light cage trailers as police cars in certain areas.  They had learned to use better INF-AFV coordination since the early days in Chechnia...

APR: Syria and Jordan join an alliance with Iraq. In response, 8 US Regular Army divisions are activated.

APR: A pair of students kill and wound several other students and faculty at Columbine High School. The youths were armed with several handguns, rifles, and various home made explosive devices.

MAY: Native American rebellions begin in the US and Canada.

JUN: Three of the recently-activated US divisions reach Saudi Arabia.

JULY 4th: Independance Square in Philadelphia, is bombed. The President orders the borders to be closed, and many suspect groups are targetted for deportation. Terrorist activities against US cities escalate throughout the "Long Hot Summer" of 1999.

automobile of former Secretary of Defense Ron Harrington,target of a terrorist attack

JUL: Two US reserve divisions are mobilized for deployment abroad.

NOV: A recently-deployed US reserve division, the 28th "Keystone" division, is one of two such divisions sent to Saudi Arabia. The Iraqi-Syrian-Jordanian alliance sees this act as a provocation, and begins harrassing non-member shipping in the Persian Gulf, Red Sea, and Mediterranean areas.

DEC: Native Americans declare the states of Montana, North and South Dakota, to be "independant, and free from the tyranny of the US Government". The US Government sends a few troops to "monitor and contain" the problem, and severely limits travel in these areas.

JAN: While dealing with their joint Native American problem, US troops fire on Canadian troops. Canada declares war within the week. The killing and destruction is never very intense, and both governments end up "losing face" among the world powers, as the "war" ends up being little more than muscle-flexing and name-calling...

FEB: After being repeatedly waved off, French missile boat rams a British tanker in the North Sea. The ensuing ecological disaster is immense. Britain declares war on France.

Spain joins France in it's fight against Britain. The French Army suffers terrible losses against the British. However, the French Aerospace Industry is successful in destroying 60% of the world's sattelites.

APR: The 101st Airmobile division returns to Saudi Arabia.

MAY: Biological Agents are simultaneously released at St. Petersburg, Red Square Moscow, London, Berlin, and Frankfurt. 6 Million souls perish within hours. The perpetrators are at first thought to be an Arab extremist group, but subsequent evidence shows that the act was undertaken by a group of Iraqi officers and men, under orders from Baghdad and with aid from Syria and Jordan. The US retaliates with limited nuclear strikes against military targets in Iraq, Syria, and Jordan.

Pre-war Active Duty US Army Divisions Pre-war National Guard and Reserve US Army Divisions

JUN: US troops cross the Saudi border into Iraq and Jordan. Amman falls in two weeks, and Baghdad follows suit in another week. The Regular Army units of both nations are conquered, but guerillas begin operating in the more remote regions of both countries. Torn by warfare, Syria is plunged into a Civil War, one faction side with the US, British, and German forces in counter-insurgency operations against Guerillas in Syrian, Iraq and Jordan.

SEP: Disorder in the Ukraine, Lithuania, and Russian Republic is now being called a Civil War. UN troops are deployed, but it is rapidly understood that it is "too little, too late".

OCT: Realizing their conflict with Canada draws troops from other theaters of operation, the US offers a cease-fire, and large war reparation payments for their "unfortunate mistake". With less of a manpower shortage, the US commits more troops to the former Soviet Union, and to the Persian Gulf area. Larger-scale tactical nuclear warfare becomes more frequent, as most nations have felt the manpower crunch to varying extents. Russia, China, India, Pakistan, North Korea, and the US all begin using nukes more regularly in their areas of conflict.

JAN: Nicaragua threatens it's weaker, Central American neighbors into submission. They are effectively ruled as puppets of the Nicaraguan regime.

FEB: Seeing US forces so thinly spread elsewhere, Mexico invades and reclaims Texas. US forces rapidly rout the invaders.

APR: The Federacion del Sud is formed. Charter members include Mexico, Peru, Venezuela, and Brazil.

MAY: Nicaragua joins the Federacion del Sud. The effects of the Canadian war reparations are beginning to be felt in the US. The US economy is at an all-time low.

JUN: The Federacion del Sud invades the US. Since most US forces are worn down and/or deployed elsewhere, the FS troops encounter little resistance until they reach the Mississippi River. Some units raid as far north as Maryland and Ohio. Congress will not condone the use of even tactical-scale nukes on US soil.

AUG: Many overseas US units are "officially" recalled to the Continental US. Many units are unable to comply, since they are cut off, and have little or no transportation. The story of the 101st Airmobile is as incredible as it is inspiring.

Screaming Eagles

The 101st "Screaming Eagle" division crossed the Saudi border in the June 2000 invasion, swept north to Baghdad, crossed the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, trapping thousands of Iraqi troops. When ordered home a year and a half later, the 101st was completely surrounded. Supplemented with a large horse cavalry arm, the survivors of the division rode west, crossing hostile Syrian territory, and fought their way to the Mediterranean. From there they traded their horses for fishing boats, and sailed to Gibraltar. Gibraltar was as impossible to cross during WW3 as it was in past times, so the 101st "cut a deal" with some Sicilians. A few weeks later, the 101st steamed into New Orleans aboard a former-French container ship. Of the nearly 18,000 troops who deployed to the Gulf, only 1628 returned to the US. The journey was destined for success, say members of the 101st. The container ship was registered as the Gulf Eagle...

NOV: The 28th division returns to PA, and is charged with maintaining internal security in the PA, NY, OH, & MD area. The Keystone Division consists of perhaps 800 effectives at this point, and begins a large-scale recruiting effort in the PA area.

28th DIV(M) OB at start of the story

MAR: Pennsylvania, along with most of the Middle Atlantic states, is in ruins. Philadelphia and surrounding areas are devastated, while most major cities are in anarchy. The remote Northern Tier is Insular from the rest of the state, and the East-West highway artery of Interstate 80 is Terrorized by bands of marauders. A glimmer of hope exists however. Rumor has it that Pittsburgh has organized and is making a return to somewhat of a normal life.That certainly is the exception and not the rule, as far as the rest of the State, Country, or World is concerned...

DEC: Elements of the 28th division mutiney, and stage a partially successful attack on the Capitol District in Washington DC. Approximately half of the division's units remain loyal, and in PA.

JAN: Winter of 2003 is brutally harsh. Disease, starvation, and exposure all take their toll on the World. Since 1998, nearly two-thirds of the population of the World has perished. Most units have but three choices for survival: raid others, enter the age-old protection racket, or scavange, plant, or manufacture what is needed. The pros and cons of each choice are myriad... After the past year's fighting, many units are indiscriminate over who they kill. Survival is the name of the game.

Spring, 2003: The Present...

The most common military specialist in 2003 became the sniper...

Movies and books to view for inspiration:
Not all are favorites of mine, yet all have something redeeming, be it a character, a plot, "the world", or "the feel".

Movies: Red Dawn, The Outlaw Josie Wales, The Wild Geese, Roadwarrior, Cyborg, ANZACS, Waterworld, Kelly's Heros, The Green Berets, Back to Bataan, Papillon, The Great Escape, 30 Seconds Over Tokyo, The Longest Day, The Dirty Dozen, The Bridge Over the River Kwai, Bat-21, Seige at Firebase Gloria, Apocalypse Now, Born on the Fourth of July, Full Metal Jacket, Platoon, Uncommon Valor, The Big Red One, Three Days of the Condor, Saving PVT Ryan, Enemy at the Gates (the movie was but one story, the book has many more and is better IMHO)

Books: The Art of War, by Sun Tsu, Brave Men(or anything else by WWII correspondant Ernie Pyle), Rogue Warrior( Richard Marcinko, Charlie Company, Ripcord, SOG, Rommel as Military Commander, Mercs, The Penkovskiy Papers, by Oleg Penkovskiy, The Pentagon Papers, Enemy at the Gates, by William Craig, The Green Berets, by Robin Moore(alot better than the movie),


Copyright 1998-2001 ERIC The Chapman Stick Pioneer of Union County. All Rights Reserved