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World War Three (Atlantic Resolve)

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World War III (often abbreviated to WWIII or WW3), also known as the Third World War, is an ongoing global war which had begun in 2015. The initial opposing military alliances were the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). A number of non-NATO countries quickly sided with the NATO alliance including Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, etc. North Korea and Russia became reluctant allies against a common foe.

Background

The Euromaiden was a wave of demonstrations and civil unrest which began on November 21, 2013 when Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych choose to suspend the signing of the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement in favor of maintaining closer ties with the Russian Federation. The movement was initially limited to minor protests until a police crackdown led to a full-scale riot. The increasing unrest eventually led to the 2014 Ukrainian Revolution which ended with the ouster of President Yanukovych from power. Masked Russian soldiers without insignias took over the Supreme Council of Crimea and occupied strategic sites across Crimea. The Russian Federation annexed Crimea a few weeks later. In August 2014, Russian intervention in the War in Donbass became more visibly apparent due to numerous border crossings by Russian military forces into eastern Ukraine without permission from the Ukrainian government.

In response to Russian intervention in the internal affairs of Ukraine, NATO launches Operation Atlantic Resolve. American troops and vehicles are deployed throughout Eastern Europe, most notably the Baltic States. On March 16, 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the military to go on full readiness alert in snap drills throughout Russia and the Arctic. This order was given just one day after Putin revealed in a Russian television documentary that he was prepared to order a full nuclear alert in the event of NATO intervention in response to Russia's annexation of Crimea the previous year. The Russian military snap drills including the deployment of bombers and ballistic missiles to Kaliningrad and Crimea.

Latvian Airspace Skirmish (POD)

On March 17, 2015, seven Russian military aircraft were intercepted by NATO aircraft over the Baltic Sea. Despite warnings one of the Russian aircraft strayed into Latvian airspace. The intruding aircraft was quickly shot down; the others acted almost immediately and an intense air battle commenced. The battle was swift and ended in a matter of minutes. The Russians lost three fighter aircraft while NATO lost only one. The surviving Russian aircraft disengaged from the skirmish and returned to Kaliningrad where the incident was reported.

Growing Diplomatic Crisis

President Putin strongly condemns NATO for the attack and authorizes fighter pilots to use their own discretion when facing close-up interception by NATO aircraft. President Obama in turn condemns the actions of the Russian military and holds Vladimir Putin personally responsible for the Baltic Sea skirmish. Less then 24 hours later, the United States and the European Union imposes additional sanctions against the Russian Federation. On April 1, Russia is expelled from the G-20 and will not be invited to take part in the upcoming summit in November. This expulsion further isolates the Russian Federation diplomatically and the country is threatened with a possible economic recession. Starting on May 4th, NATO commenced Operation Lightning Strike, a four-day military training mission designed to test troop readiness to react to a clandestine military incursion similar to the one the Russians used in Crimea in 2014. When the 2015 Moscow Victory Parade was held on May 9th to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the capitulation of Nazi Germany, the United States and the European Union refused to take part in the parade due to Russian intervention in the Ukraine over the past year as well as the March 2015 Baltic Sea Air Skirmish. On May 26th, NATO launched massive Arctic military drills in the Nordic countries; Russia responded by commencing its own Arctic war games.

Arctic Ocean Skirmish

On May 28, a pair of armed Russian fighter aircraft buzzed a U.S. naval destroyer. After the Russian pilots ignored all warnings, the commander of the American destroyer gave the fateful order to shoot down both hostile aircraft. President Putin condemned NATO military action and ordered the Northern Fleet to immediately commence unrestricted air and naval warfare against NATO forces in the Arctic.

Countdown to War

The impact from outbreak of hostilities between Russian and NATO forces in the Arctic was almost immediate. The New York Stock Exchange crashed and hundreds of thousands of peace demonstrators took to the streets in all major U.S. cities. The U.S. military upgraded to DEFCON 2 alert as all National Guard and Reserve units are ordered to active duty. The Russian government had begun the process of evacuating a number of major cities including Moscow. Vladimir Putin and Barack Obama were in virtual constant contact via the Moscow-Washington hotline as both leaders attempted to defuse the escalating crisis in the Arctic. The situation worsened as Russian military forces invaded Ukraine and linked up with pro-Russian separatists fighting government forces; several NATO countries, particularly Poland, were now weighing the possibility of deploying ground troops into Ukraine to help them fight the Russians.

The War Begins

Fourth of July celebrations were interrupted when armed men initially believed to be domestic militia seized control of two airports in the Seattle Metropolitan Area. An ATF task force was dispatched to the area to deal with the problem when the unexpected happened.

Thousands of Russian Marines disembarked from container ships, overpowered the ATF task force, and seized control of the Port of Seattle. Meanwhile thousands of additional Russian military personnel arrived via repurposed long-range bombers at the airports now believed to be held by Spetsnaz GRU rather then domestic militia. With their beachhead secured, the Russians began their assault on the City of Seattle itself.

In response to the invasion, the United States formally declared war on the Russian Federation and invoked Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty; the invocation was confirmed by NATO less then an hour later and the Third World War had begun.

As Russian military forces occupy Seattle, the Pentagon orders the postponement of several scheduled deployments to Europe. All available military personnel in the Pacific Northwest are ordered to the Seattle Metropolitan Area for combat duty.

Eastern European Front (July 2015)

The Russian invasion of Seattle turned out to be a diversion to their main objective. On July 10, the Russians launched numerous air and missile strikes against NATO military installations throughout Eastern Europe as well as Denmark and Germany. While the Russians thus far refrained from the use of nuclear weapons, the devastation the attacks inflicted could not be denied.

The Russians coordinated with the air and missile strikes with a full-scale invasion of the Baltic States and Poland. Over 100,000 Russian troops, backed by aircraft and armor support, were involved in this new offensive. The Baltic States as well as the Polish city of Gdansk were occupied by Russian and Belarusian military forces one week into the offensive. With their initial objectives secured, the Russians made their ground push towards the Polish capital city of Warsaw. The Russians at that point employed the dreaded Iskander tactical ballistic missile system, targeting NATO positions in and around Warsaw with conventional warheads. Russian and Belarusian troops entered Warsaw on July 30.

Intense urban warfare was fought between Russian and NATO forces throughout the Polish capital for over a month. Much of the city had been devastated and many important historical structures were destroyed. The situation seemed hopeless as Russian-led CSTO forces had occupied more then half of Warsaw and rest had nearly been encircled.

NATO commanders concluded that if additional reinforcements weren't sent soon, then there wasn't much hope of stopping the Russian onslaught relying solely on conventional means. Unfortunately the Russians maintained a firm hold on Seattle and the deployment of the U.S. Army III Corps to Europe continued to be delayed. As a result, NATO commanders were forced to make due with what they currently had.

Russian troops and pro-Russian militia fighting in Ukraine entered Kiev on July 18. By the end of the month, the Russians held everything east of the Dnieper and the western portion of Kiev was in danger of being surrounded. By this point, the Ukrainian president and his family were flown to the City of Lviv roughly 70 kilometers from the Polish border. While most NATO troops were focusing on the Battle of Warsaw, a NATO battalion consisting primarily of German, Dutch, and British troops was deployed to Ukraine's temporary capital.

Korean Front (July 2015)

Upon the outbreak of war between Russia and NATO, North Korea entered into a de facto alliance with the Russian Federation against a common foe and began a full mobilization of the Korean People's Army (KPA). Two days after the Russian military invaded the Baltic States and Poland, North Korea launched a full-scale attack on South Korea. Heavy artillery and ground-to-ground missiles rained down on ROK fortifications along the southern side of the DMZ. The Korean People's Army Special Operation Force (NKSOF) attacked key military and civilian targets throughout South Korea. A number of ROK government officials and military general officers were assassinated.

The Joint Security Area within the Demilitarized Zone was rapidly transformed into a battleground as the ROK garrison was attacked by KPA and NKSOF forces. The fight was over in ten minutes with a decisive North Korean victory. All surviving ROK, USFK, and UNC personnel in the now former "Truce Village" were summarily executed.

Less then an hour after the initial attacks had begun, North Korean armored units crossed the DMZ into South Korea. ROK defenses were overrun in less then 24 hours and KPA forces began their push south towards Seoul. The Eighth United States Army was moving as quickly as possible to fortify Seoul as well as stage hit-and-run attacks to delay the KPA advance towards the capital.

On July 25, Seoul was rapidly transformed into a major urban battlefield as North Korean troops poured into the city and US/ROK forces fought back.

U.S. Home Front

By the beginning of August, the U.S. had assumed a full wartime economy. Taxes were greatly increased, supplies of all kinds were rationed, and the military draft was reinstated. The 2015 War Powers Act was passed on July 12 and took effect immediately with broader powers granted to the federal government, particularly the executive branch. Television, radio, internet, and other media were gradually changed to promote the war effort.

Washington State was under military lockdown due to the Russian invasion. After several weeks of war, the Russians still controlled Seattle and were staging attacks against Everett, Tacoma, and other urban centers in close proximity to the occupied city.

Donald Trump, a U.S. businessman and potential candidate in upcoming presidential elections, praised President Obama for focusing U.S. military efforts on national defense while at the same time criticizing NATO European leaders for failing to maintain a large enough military to combat Russian aggression.

Eastern European Front (August 2015)

The Battle of Warsaw continued with intense urban combat between Russian and NATO forces. Military death toll had exceeded over ten thousand on both sides. Furthermore thousands of Warsaw residents were also killed in the fighting and over a hundred thousand more lost their homes. Defense of the Polish capital city was now NATO's top priority and European leaders were now calling for Obama to send reinforcements as soon as possible despite the ongoing Russian actions in northwest Washington State.

The Battle of Kiev ended by mid-August when surviving Ukrainian troops capitulated to Russian and pro-Russian forces. The Ukrainian president made a speech from Lviv vowing to continue the war until the entire country including Crimea was freed from Russian occupation.

Korean Front (August 2015)

The Battle of Seoul continued into August. Despite the numerical superiority of the KPA, the technological might of the US/ROK combined forces was enough to prevent the fall of the South Korean capital. By mid-month, the North Koreans were pushed from the city.

As US/ROK forces advanced north towards the DMZ, North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un was becoming increasingly desperate. He ordered all remaining artillery and missile batteries to commence full-scale bombardment of Seoul. Within hours, the death toll exceeded ten thousand and many important structures in the capital were destroyed.

The conflict worsened on August 22 when the North Korean Strategic Rocket Forces launched several ballistic missiles believed to be armed with nuclear warheads. Most of the missiles were intercepted by America's THAAD anti-ballistic missile system. Unfortunately one nuclear-armed missile made it through and detonated over advancing US/ROK troops with an estimated yield of 10 kilotons. Thousands of American and South Korean soldiers were killed instantly and over ten thousand more wounded.

Outrage to North Korea's nuclear attack on Allied troops is immediate and enormous. Many in the United States and South Korea call for the complete and total annihilation of North Korea. President Obama had considered a nuclear retaliatory response against Kim Jong-un's regime, but was concerned that doing so would almost certainly result in further escalation of the ongoing conflict with Russia. Instead the President ordered B-2 stealth bombers to begin a conventional carpet bombing campaign of Pyongyang.

Chinese Intervention

On August 25, just three days after the nuclear attack on US/ROK forces, the Kim Dynasty came to an abrupt end as a result of a coup sponsored by the People's Republic of China. Simultaneously, the newly reorganized People's Volunteer Army crossed the Yalu River into North Korea and advanced south towards Pyongyang. North Korea's new leader ordered the immediate withdrawal of all remaining KPA forces south of the 38th Parallel and not to interfere with Chinese forces operating within the country.

A new armistice was negotiated between North and South Korea by the end of the month with status quo ante bellum maintained. In a gesture of good faith, the new North Korean government extradited Kim Jong-un to South Korea to be tried as a war criminal. The Chinese People's Volunteer Army relieved the Korean People's Army of most duties including patrolling the Demilitarized Zone. Chinese President Xi Jinging made clear to both the Americans and Russians that they desired no further part in the ongoing global conflict and warned both sides against any encroachment into sovereign Chinese territory.

Pacific Northwest Front (September 2015)

Eastern European Front (September 2015)

Campaigns

Occupation of Seattle

Baltic Campaign

Polish Campaign

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