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The North American War was a major war that raged in the years of 2023 and 2024. The sides were the Vancouver Pact(USA & Canada) that fought against the Central American Alliance(Mexico, Cuba, and several other Central American countries), the war was one of the deadliest conflicts the Americas have seen in centuries.
Tensions inside the US(2018-2019)
In 2016, Hillary Clinton was elected President of the United States, and one of her first actions as President was introducing a new immigration policy that allowed much greater numbers of immigrants from Mexico to get in the USA and gave legal status to law-abiding undocumented immigrants. At first, that policy had some positive effects, as the USA had a larger labor force and it managed to reduce the national debt slightly, but in the later years of Clinton's term, many immigrants felt discriminated since many of them had little to no money and many didn't have a health insurance. They had a disproportionate share of prisoners compared to other ethnic groups and the country didn't try to help them in any way. Many immigrants developed radical, nationalist thoughts, about trying to receive autonomy from the US while some even desired full statehood and leaving the US. In the years of 2018 and 2019, large protests were held in several major cities in the southern states which were home to large numbers of immigrants, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston and more. The demonstrators, numbering in the hundreds of thousands, protested against alleged discrimination and indifference to the Hispanic community's problems by Washington D.C. The authorities, fearing the protests would get out of control, used force against the protesters, with dozens of civilians and officers killed and many more wounded. Many human rights organizations and countries, including key U.S allies condemned the American actions. President Clinton met with several key leaders of the Mexican community in the U.S so things won't get out of control. The meetings were successful, with many gains to the immigrants, such as phasing in a free health insurance for kids of immigrants, reduced taxes, and releasing Hispanic prisoners which committed minor crimes. A significant portion of immigrants welcomed those changes, but many others didn't, claiming that it's not enough and that by accepting those changes the Mexican community would give up the idea of autonomy. In parallel to those tensions, several drug cartels managed to infiltrate the U.S border and smuggle several tons of cocaine, destabilizing several regions in the southern states. Meanwhile, radical factions in the Hispanic-American community called the administration to make more concessions, especially regarding autonomy for regions with an Hispanic majority. Those radicals warned of civil unrest and terrorism if the declines to comply. After the demands for more concessions weren't met, several extremists decided to form a small terrorist organization called "The Opposition and Liberation Front", whose target was to use force against the U.S government in order to earn better conditions and ultimately independence for the Mexican community in the U.S. That terrorist organization will have committed several terrorist attacks on U.S soil for years to come. In an act that would be remembered as a low point in the U.S history, the O.L.F terrorist organization carried out a deadly attack in the town hall of Los Angeles in which 63 people were killed by 3 explosions, including the vice-mayor and 6 senators who were touring the city, and many more injured. In a tweet it released, it said the attack was carried out to send a message to the U.S authorities that their mistreatment of Hispanics won't go unanswered. All of the mainstream key figures in the Hispanic community strongly condemned the attack, and wanted to make clear that that group wasn't representing the community, but that didn't stop president Clinton from lifting all the reliefs initially made, and imposing curfews on areas with Hispanic majority, further destabilizing the nation's status.
Growing Tensions Between the U.S.A and Mexico
In the second half of the 2010's, a huge amount of natural resources has been discovered in Mexico, including large reserves of oil, coal and natural gas that could provide Mexico for decades to come. Further growth in hi-tech, manufacturing and energy industries, increased international investment in Mexican cities as well as economic co-operation with regional allies led to what people called the "Golden Age of Mexico". In a period of 5 years, from 2015 to 2020, the Mexican GDP doubled in size to approximately 4.5 Trillion Dollars, rivalling Brazil's.
The life expectancy and literacy in Mexico began closing in on the U.S ones. Unemployment rate went down from 4.5% in 2015 to an astonishing 1% in 2020. The Mexican president, Juan Ricardo Cardozo that was elected in 2018, was a right-wing nationalist advocating for Spanish unity in the Americas and had a lot of concern about the situation of the Hispanic immigrant community in the U.S.A. Enjoying its new economic power, Mexico had a lot of available money to invest in defense spending, and by 2020 it had an army 850,000 strong, with an additional 500,000 reserve troops and a defense budget estimated to be at around $80 Billion, a 7-fold increase from 2014. As part of the Mexican president's Spanish unity program, Mexico began strengthening its military and economic ties with neighboring Central American countries such as Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama and even the communist Cuba, with Mexican military bases being set up in almost all of the mentioned countries. Up until the 2020's there were no significant tensions between the U.S and Mexico, and the U.S even welcomed the unprecedented economic growth and invested in Mexico. However, by the beginning of the 2020's, growing differences of opinions and world views have led to escalating tensions between the two powers. Several other factors contributed to this, such as the lack of action by the Mexican government to stop the flow of drug cartels who were entering the U.S, which drew criticism in Washington D.C, and growing attention of the Mexican government to the situation of the Hispanic community in the U.S, which in some regions was treated the same way blacks were in the 1960's, due to growing ethnic tensions and suspicion. Although protected from discrimination by the law, the Hispanic community claimed the government was deliberately ignoring serious issues of discrimination in some regions affected by tensions and other factors. The increased amount of drugs that were entering the U.S severely impacted the regions on the border, transforming them into dangerous lands where money, not law ruled. That spurred the U.S government to take drastic measures to restore the rule of law, such as closing down the border in certain regions and imposing harsh curfews in volatile areas, where breaking the curfew is a death sentence. By 2020, regular Mexican criticism of U.S government policy was commonplace. In 2020, the political environment in the U.S was very different than the previous ones. The Republican and Democratic parties were now 2 out of 4 major parties.The first new party was the American National Party, a far right-wing populist party whose platform was based on the idea of stopping the constant flow of immigrants and deporting all criminal ones, while also introducing capital punishment for drug traffickers. The second new party was the Party for Social Equality, a left-wing party which, other than traditional left-wing views, wanted that the regions in the southern states bordering Mexico with Hispanic majorities receive autonomy. That party was highly supported among the Hispanics. The 2020 elections were close and tense, with the final results being: 14% votes for the Democratic party , 18% for the A.N.P, 30% to the Party for Social Equality, 37% for the Republican party. A Republican president named Drake Tristan was elected. In September 2021, the newly elected president decided to cancel Hillary Clinton's immigrant policy altogether. Many immigrants were now stuck on the Mexican side of the border, leading to whole families, even communities being segregated by the Mexican-U.S Border. Many Mexicans who were on the Mexican side and couldn't get in the U.S were poor and were looking for a job in the U.S. Although in 2021 the Mexican unemployment rate was very low, there were still almost 2 million jobless Mexicans, willing to work in the hi-tech and commercial jobs America had to offer, with hi-tech industries booming in the southern states, especially California. Besides, many immigrants just wanted to unite with their loved ones. Entire tent towns were created on the U.S-Mexico border, with protests against the American guards happening daily. The conditions in those tent towns resembled third world country conditions. After seeing the results, many countries and organizations condemned President Tristan's decision and asked to restore the Clinton immigration policy. A poll found, however, that nearly 60% of Americans supported the President's actions. An especially harsh condemnation came from Mexico, when the Mexican President Cardozo called President Tristan "fascist" and said that Tristan wanted the entire continent to be "Mexican-Free". The American president didn't Remain silent, and said he was just taking all means necessary to keep all the "Rapists, Drug dealers and pedophiles" that Mexico sends him away from his country. After that statement Mexico demanded an apology. The U.S didn't apologize. Following that Mexico recalled its ambassador, kicked the American one and cut off diplomatic and economic relations with the U.S. Tensions were escalating now, and the countdown to war began.
Countdown to war (2021-2022)
November 2021: There are now no relations between the U.S and Mexico, and the border now consists of a 1 mile(1.6 km) wide demilitarized zone, similar to the Korean one. Many Mexicans began developing anti-American feelings. The same happening in U.S, as many Americans were now increasingly resentful towards Mexico.
December 2021: Hundreds of thousands of Mexican immigrants in the U.S began going back to Mexico, usually by flying to Canada and then to Mexico, since the U.S-Mexico relations were cut and there are no flights from the U.S to Mexico and Vice Versa. Mexico, now a highly developed and industrialized country, with an economy surpassing Brazil's and a population of 150 million, could support many of the immigrants which were coming back to their home country. For many of those who returned, Mexico treated them better than the U.S. That trend of returning to Mexico will only grow in the following months, and the result would be that the Hispanic population in the U.S, which was 20% of the total population in 2020, would be reduced to only 15% in 2022. The so-called "Mexican Exodus" would have a profound impact on the U.S economy.
January 2022: The U.S strengthens its relations with the neighbouring Canada, and both sign the "Vancouver Pact", which is, basically, an upgrade to their NATO partnership. The more important parts the Vancouver Pact state that there should be a regular exchange of technologies, ideas and intelligence between the 2 nations, and that there should always be 100% transparency in terms of co-operation between the countries. It also greatly upgrades economic ties, which boosts both nations' economy.
February-May 2022: Mexico City is host to talks between Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Panama, Honduras and Cuba about a military alliance to counter the Vancouver Pact. In May the talks are declared successful and the "Central American Alliance" Is created. All the countries inside the alliance are obliged to help out other fellow CAA allied countries which are under attack, all countries should share their technology and should help out (though not necessarily) a CAA allied country which is in trouble, economically.
June-July 2022: There are now 2 distinguished camps in the Mexican-American conflict: The Vancouver Pact (USA & Canada) and the Central American Alliance (Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Panama, Honduras and Cuba). Canada's staunch support of its ally USA has led to an increasingly worsening relationship with the CAA member countries but neither country has yet cut the relations.
August 2022: The decrease in labor force in the recent years severely harmed the U.S economy. Although advances in technology allowed robots to replace humans in certain tasks, the robots just couldn't keep up with the sheer numbers of missing human workers, even as robots were tasked with more complex jobs. As more and more immigrants leave the USA to Mexico and America is losing its labor force, the government decides to severely restrict the freedom of movement to all U.S citizens, allowing only movement between states and restricting leaving the country to officials and military personnel, as well as some important businessmen. Leaving the country illegally would cause the loss of U.S citizenship. The government's action was widely condemned, many defining it as "unconstitutional", however the government said it would be temporary, and defended the decision, saying it was necessary to preserve the remaining labor force of a fragile American economy.
September 2022: Huge protests in almost all big American cities. Hundreds are dead and thousands are arrested and injured. Curfews are widespread. In some states even the National Guard is called. Key Hispanic leaders send a distress message to the Mexican government and the CAA(Central American Alliance). 2 other countries are now in the alliance: The Dominican Republic and Costa Rica. The CAA now has 9 Countries and harbors quite a lot of international influence. The UN security Council has recently debated on whether to give Mexico a permanent seat, but the U.S said it would veto it anyway so the subject went off the agenda.
November 2022: In a CAA conference, the Mexican President Cardozo condemned the American actions, called them "unforgivable" and delivered a speech, and its ending gained the most attention: "English-speaking America is a threat to us, and we don't have a choice but to call them our enemies, as they are treating our brothers in their territory like they treated blacks 200 years ago. They and their French-speaking assistants (referring to Canada) must immediately cease discriminating our brothers and allow them the freedom of movement, or they will face our might. The tables have turned, and they're not the only power in the continent. The time will come, and there will be full Spanish unity over the Americas!" The speech was applauded for several minutes and was broadcasted live on all of the televisions in America with an estimated 30 million people watching the speech.The speech incited anti-Americanism in many countries in Central and South America.
December 2022- Mexico has begun forming missile bases in Cuba and other CAA member countries and it deployed its recently bought Russian-made aircraft carrier to patrol the Gulf of Mexico as well as several missile ships deployed in the Gulf of California, ready to launch precise missiles to key military targets and possibly civilian targets on U.S soil. By now, several attempts to solve Mexican-American conflict were made by international organizations such as the United Nations and the European Union, however as both nations had a hardline policy regarding each other and the opinions were too far apart, those attempts failed.
January 2023: A bus full of Canadian tourists exploded in Guadalajara, then the second largest Mexican city, and killed 20 tourists. Although the President apologized for the incident, the radical minister of interior praised it, saying it's a revenge for the treatment of Hispanic people in the U.S. Following that statement Canada cut off the relations with Mexico, and in response all the CAA member countries cut off their relations with Canada. Because the relations were cut and Mexico had nothing to lose, President Cardozo called on the Hispanic community to leave Canada and go to Mexico, and said that the Canadians were on the side of the "English-speaking enemy". He also offered various benefits for those who'd agree to come. Following that statement, tens of thousands of people from the Hispanic community left Canada in the following weeks, which led newly elected Conservative prime minister, Leonard Calvin to stand firmly on America's side and to reaffirm his unwavering support for the US
February 2023: As both parties' armies gather near the American-Mexican border, it is now clear to everybody that an armed conflict is inevitable. A last desperate attempt of making peace is taken by the UN, and all the parties gather in Geneva to a peace conference in February. In the speech of the American representative, she said that Mexico must stop with the aggression towards the U.S and that the Mexican policy is the main barrier to peace. The Mexican representetive, in response called the American one a "Murderer" and said that "You are killing our children and brothers". The furious Americans left the conference and the process was blown. Polls found that 60% of Mexicans, Cubans and citizens of other Central American nations support using military force against the U.S, while 64% of non-hispanic Americans and 15% of Hispanic Americans support a military action against Mexico and the CAA. At this point, tensions were so high, that even the smallest clash, skirmish or provocation could ignite a full-scale war. The citizens, economies, armies and allies of all sides were ready for war and willing to fight until the bitter end. The U.S armed forces raised the defense readiness condition to level 3. It was time.
War- Early stages (March-June 2023)
March 2023: A plane departs from Mexico City International Airport and flies to Heathrow Airport in the UK. Onboard are 110 passengers and 10 crew members, 87 of which are Mexican. Due to bad weather and radar malfunctions, the plane starts flying over Florida. The latter is home to several military bases and concentrations due to the escalating tensions and the need to protect Florida from Cuba, which joined the Pan-Spanish camp. Another result of the escalation is the electronic "tagging" of every Mexican plane as hostile by the U.S armed forces, so if it flies over the U.S it is likely to be intercepted. Unfortunately for those on the plane, the plane flies over a SAM(surface-to-air missile) site just before leaving U.S airspace, and the automatic missile-launching system, which dosen't have the ability to identify civilian planes, automatically launches a missile at the plane. The missile hits the engine and sets it ablaze while killing instantly most of the people onboard. The remains of the plane crashed in the Atlantic ocean. The plane's last signal was received in the Miami International Airport. The employees of the air traffic control received a call from Homestead Air Reserve Base, an air force base near Miami: in the call they were warned not to report a missing Mexican plane since this might spark a war. The Defense Readiness Condition of the U.S military is raised to level 2. Although the the case was not reported to the media, the Mexicans also noticed the loss of contact from the plane and examined its path from Mexico City to London, and concluded that there is no doubt that while the plane was above U.S soil, it was shot down. After being informed of the case, President Cardozo orders an emergency meeting with Secretary-General Alejandro Martinez. What the 2 will decide will have a profound impact on the history of the American continent. The Central American Alliance is going to war against the The Vancouver Pact. Cardozo calls the heads of states of Argentina, Venezuela and Chile and asks for their help. The South American leaders refuse to officially side with the CAA but they say that their countries might help the CAA economically and militarily depending on the course of the war. After recieving the confirmation, Cardozo wastes no time. He calls all of the leaders of the states of the CAA and says that it's time for war, however the Americans still don't know that the CAA is going to war. Cardozo decided to make the first strike and to leave the official declaration of war to the U.S congress. 200 Mexican stealth planes enter U.S territory, dropping electromagnetic bombs which disable all of the radars, computerized military systems and communication networks within a radius of several dozens of kilometers. Following that, 350 Mexican attack aircraft begin attacking military sites and air bases in California, New Mexico, Texas and Arizona, taking the Americans by surprise. 200 American airplanes were destroyed on the ground. It takes Washington D.C half an hour to understand the U.S is under attack because of the lack of communication from the areas under attack. Even after 1,000 american warplanes have made it to the air to defend the U.S airspace, the stunned American soldiers on the ground posed little threat to the advancing Mexican soldiers and tanks. Nearly 500,000 Mexican soldiers entered U.S territory in a couple of weeks. Soon other CAA armies will follow. Meanwhile in Cuba, some 300,000 Cuban and Mexican soldiers are preparing to invade Florida.
April 2023: Two weeks into the war, and all hell breaks loose. The advancing Mexican soldiers have captured various towns and cities in the states bordering Mexico that include California, Texas, Arizona and New Mexico. The American military forces are on a full retreat as they cannot set up a defensive perimeter to halt the offensive. In two weeks the average length of captured U.S territory is 64 km(40 miles). On the air, the Mexican air force and its assistants from the CAA proved to be a worthy opponent to the U.S air force which was considered to be the best in the world. Mexico had purchased many state-of-the-art aircraft and drones, mainly from Russia, China, Israel and even the U.S itself and set up a new training program for its pilots, based on Western ones with lessons from conflicts of the Cold war, including The Vietnam war, The Korean war and the Six-Day War, all of that over the course of the past 8 years. By now the Mexican air force, with all its equipment and pilots, was considered among the top 10 in the world, and with the aid of other air forces and the element of surprise has managed to overwhelm the U.S air force for a brief time. In Florida, some 250,000 Cuban and Mexican troops land near Miami following heavy bombings of U.S positions that left the residing forces severely weakened. Despite that, the CAA coalition manages to secure a beachhead only after 3 days of heavy fighting and after suffering 7,000 dead and missing. Emergency states are declared in all of the invaded states and the U.S armed forces begin mass-evacuating civilians to northern states. Martial laws are expected to be declared in the following weeks. Fearing their constitutional rights will be taken away from them, civilians leave the invaded states by the thousands and the more northern states are having difficulties in absorbing these vast amounts of new people in such short time periods. Soon states like Nevada, Utah, Colorado and Oklahoma will announce quotas of refugees they'll willingly take and take care of, and after those quotas are reached they'll hand over the case to the federal government. On the international stage, the vast majority of countries condemned the violence and urged all sides to exercise restraint, including organizations like the U.N, the E.U and the Non-aligned movement. A select number of Western states that are among America's closest allies, however, aligned themselves with the U.S and announced they stand with it and they included: the U.K, Australia, Israel and Japan. Canada, headed by the hawkish PM Leonard Calvin, declared war on the CAA and started sending troops to aid the Americans. The Canadian military budget is significantly increased.
May 2023- The U.S air force has managed to achieve air dominance over U.S skies and its primary goal now it to strike CAA positions on occupied U.S territory and to drop supplies for the troops on the frontline. Non-combat roles and stealth operations are assigned to drones, while manned fighters such as the F-35 Lightning II are sent to fend off the remaining enemy aircraft. A large naval battle takes place in the Gulf of Mexico, where the Mexican Navy deploys its newly-bought aircraft carrier, bought from Russia ,8 more cruisers and 30 destroyers, which fight against 2 U.S aircraft carriers, 20 cruisers, 45 destroyers and 20 submarines. The U.S navy gains the upper hand and nearly half of the Mexican ships are sunk, however before the Mexican navy retreats, it centers its efforts around an aircraft carrier named USS Chicago, the newest one in the U.S navy, and it manages to sink it. With the flagship gone, the U.S navy is demoralized and returns to its bases. On the ground, the CAA has fought its way 96km(60 miles) into American soil, on average. After having overcome the initial shock and awe, the American troops organize in task forces of 50,000-100,000 troops in each captured to halt the advancement of the CAA and to regain captured territory. In Florida, the battle of Miami takes place, with nearly all civilians successfully evacuated. As the battle rages and the CAA task force, comprised of mostly Cuban troops, advances into Downtown Miami, president Tristan decides to execute the "Scorched Earth" policy, which means to evacuate all American troops and civilians wherever possible and then to send a large fleet of bombers to flatten the city under a carpet of bombs in order to wipe out all residing CAA troops. He states:"We will do whatever is necessary to defeat them." Following a campaign of advertisements for the Miami residents to evacuate, no more civilians are spotted in Miami. The president authorizes "Scorched Earth". 100 B-1B bombers, armed with incendiary bombs and regular high-explosive bombs arrive and annihilate the city. An estimated 70,000 CAA troops were killed, alongside with 3,000 American citizens that were undetected by the U.S forces. Americans are enraged by this act and approval ratings of the president have dropped to 42%. Protests take place in many cities but are soon outlawed as the White House declares national emergency. Meanwhile, France states that its satellites have detected Mexican missile launch sites in Nevada with high radioactive signatures. China, Russia and several other countries in South America decided to help the CAA, mostly with economic aid but some countries, like Argentina, also send airplanes and electronic warfare systems directly to Mexico. America's allies, in turn, also send some $10 billion in economic aid and armament. The UN intervenes and demands a ceasefire for the sake of the civilians, a request denied by both sides. The UN secretary-general states that if the sides don't agree to cease fire, the UN cannot protect them from international sanctions and prosecution. The UN security council votes whether to revoke the U.S' permanent membership, but the U.K and France vote against it so the vote is failed.
June 2023- The situation along the border has stabilized, as the forces of the Vancouver Pact have halted the CAA advance in most places, except Southern California, where CAA are pushing toward Los Angeles. American civilian casualties are estimated to be relatively low up to this point, as the evacuation process was efficient in almost all of the affected regions. The CAA task force in Florida has taken a beating, after losing nearly a third of its men in the battle of Miami, where the city was flattened by U.S bombers. Despite that, the troops quickly reorganized into 2 task forces, East and West, that would push north and northwest respectively and a garrison in the South to guard the occupied territory. Much of Southern Texas is under CAA control as the Mexican-led forces push toward San Antonio. More than 5,000 U.S in Arizona soldiers were killed by the CAA 3rd Rifle Division, assisted by heavy artillery. Fearing the CAA would do the same to the remaining forces, the Arizona National Guard surrenders and the CAA captured the city of Phoenix, effectively giving the CAA control over the state of Arizona. All of the U.S citizens that are left in Arizona are ordered to stay in their homes for the next 2 weeks. In New Mexico, the advancing CAA forces reach the town of Roswell, known for the U.F.O incident. The U.S Congress approves using bombing Mexican government buildings, and an air wing of B-52 bombers flies of Mexico City, targeting government buildings military installations. Despite using smart bombs, an estimated 1590 Mexican citizens are killed in the bombing. While the U.S expressed regrets for civilian deaths, it defended the action that was called a "war crime" by Mexico and several more countries. More bombing missions were carried out against capitals of other CAA countries, causing additional civilian casualties and sparking outrage worldwide. 3 Canadian brigades arrive to reinforce the American defenses on the frontline in California and New Mexico. Meanwhile, the President decides to return all U.S personnel deployed overseas back to the U.S. Venezuela cuts off relations with the U.S and voices support for the CAA. The U.S cabinet debates whether to use tactical nuclear weapons to annihilate the CAA forces, but the majority of its members vote against the use, citing environmental destruction, fallout concerns and civilian casualties. The cabinet concludes that the war must be transferred into enemy territory as quickly as possible, and the President orders the Joint Chiefs to begin planning "Operation Shining Beacon", a coordinated counter-offensive drive the invading forces back to their territories and take back the initiative. Meanwhile, the Hispanic terrorist organization "Opposition and Liberation Front" pledges allegiance to the CAA and carries out 3 attacks in Washington D.C, New York City and Los Angeles that kill 133 civilians, 29 law enforcement officers and 18 of the attackers themselves. The President announces 3 days of mourning and vows to eliminate the OLF organization.
The Vancouver Pact Counter-Offensive (July-December 2023)
First Week of July 2023- A week-long humanitarian ceasefire is announced by the UN. Both sides use the ceasefire to count their casualties, help civilians affected by the war and reorganize their forces. Official estimates of the current casualties are released: On the American side, 230,500 soldiers and 12,490 civilians were killed along with 590 Canadian Soldiers. 800 U.S aircraft have been destroyed, half of them on the ground. 1080 U.S and Canadian armored vehicles were destroyed. On the CAA side, officials estimated about 180,000 soldiers were killed, along with some 33,000 civilians in various U.S bombings. 750 CAA aircraft have been destroyed in dogfights. 950 CAA Armored vehicles were destroyed. After seeing the official estimates on both sides, many Americans were demoralized and demanded explanation from the President for the high casualty ratio and the fact that the enemy casualties are lower. President Tristan decided to address the nation: "My fellow Americans, our nation is at a crucial point. We are at war with a brutal, merciless enemy that does not distinguish between a combatant and a civilian. An enemy that is waging a war not for the sake of justice or democracy, but to exterminate us. This is indeed a dark period in history for us, my fellow Americans, but since our nation was founded, we have won against all those who dared to attack us, and I know that together, we will have the power to overcome any challenge." Patriotic feelings sweep through the U.S, and many Americans join the military, ready to defend their homeland. President Tristan's approval ratings increase significantly and stand at 64%. The U.S economy enters a "war mode", with nearly all sectors obliged to contribute to the war effort. Many manufacturing companies and railway service companies are nationalized, and the military budget is significantly increased to about 8% of the GDP. Meanwhile in Mexico, the success of the military campaign is bringing great popularity to President Cardozo, with approval ratings standing at 79%. He will need that popularity in order to get reelected in the upcoming elections in September. Despite increased U.S bombings, Mexico itself is almost unaffected by the war and its economy continues to grow. This would soon change as the Joint Chiefs have finished planning "Operation Shining Beacon", the code-name for a massive coordinated counter-attack against the CAA forces across the invaded states. During the week of the ceasefire, the U.S forces organize in 3 commands: The Western command, responsible for retaking occupied Californian and Arizonan land, and afterwards pushing into Mexico from the Northwest; The Eastern command, responsible for retaking occupied New Mexican and Texan land, and afterwards pushing into Mexico from the Northeast; And finally, the Florida command, responsible for retaking occupied Floridan land and afterwards invading and occupying Cuba. The Florida command is comprised of 6 divisions, while the other 2 are comprised of 10 divisions each. Due to some criticism in Washington D.C regarding Canada's so-called "inactive" role in the war, Prime Minister Calvin decides to form the Canadian Expeditionary Force, comprised from 2 divisions to participate in Operation Shining Beacon. As supplies arrive at the CAA side, the soldiers are unaware of the massive amounts of the Vancouver pact forces preparing to initiate Operation Shining Beacon, since those forces are gathering at concealed positions several kilometers away from the frontline. As soon as the ceasefire ends, the CAA forces are ordered to leave their encampments and resume advancing, however the Vancouver Pact forces have other plans.Next Weeks of July 2023- As soon as the ceasefire ends, large sirens sound in the American and Canadian military camps, indicating that it's time to attack. A first wave of 800 aircraft take off and deliver their payload of EMP bombs to the CAA camps. A second, larger wave of some 1,200 aircraft heavily bomb the CAA defensive lines with bunker buster bombs, incendiary bombs and cluster bombs. The bombings are aided by MLRS (Multi Launch Rocket System) artillery and conventional artillery. In New Mexico, Arizona and Texas, The CAA fall into complete disarray and go on a full retreat after having tried to contact the command unsuccessfully due to the EMP disabling the devices, allowing the Vancouver pact forces to push them back several dozen kilometers. In Florida, the CAA survivors of the bombings resisted the most, since they had nowhere to retreat other than the sea. They couldn't ask for an evacuation, so the remaining 60,000 CAA soldiers in Florida surrendered. Initial reports of success make their way to the White House and spark optimism and hope that the tables have turned, although the President decides to wait before publishing the news as the operation is far from over. In California, the bombings and artillery proved mostly ineffective, and the CAA casualties there were relatively low. CAA communication devices in California were unaffected by the EMP and the soldiers contacted the command, informing them about the offensive. They were instructed to stand firm and await reinforcements. The CAA forces withstood the ground attack, and both sides have taken heavy casualties. Vancouver Pact troops have recaptured Phoenix, and the rest of the CAA troops in Arizona are on a full retreat. In Texas and New Mexico, the CAA are also on a retreat, but some of them have managed to hold their ground after reorganizing in makeshift bases and combining both conventional and guerrilla fighting techniques against the attacking Vanvouver pact forces. By the end of the month, Vancouver Pact forces have regained control over Florida, Arizona and New Mexico. However, in Texas and California, the CAA have held their ground and inflicted heavy casualties upon the Vancouver Pact forces. Cities like San Antonio and San Diego are still under CAA occupation. The president decides to order the troops to push on to Mexican territory in order to isolate the enclaves of CAA-occupied territories and lay siege to them. After recapturing Florida, the Vancouver pact forces prepare to invade Cuba, as it is a point of strategic importance to the CAA from which it's possible to send ships and aircraft to the U.S. Capturing Cuba would allow the U.S and Canada to utilize it's ports and airports, in addition to defeating Mexico's most powerful partner of war. After news of the mostly successful counter-attack are released to the public and many Americans go to the streets and rejoice over the turning of the table. In Mexico City, an emergency meeting of the CAA heads of states leads to the conclusion that a counter invasion by the Vancouver Pact is imminent and a policy of nuclear deterrence must be considered. It's decided that if the Vancouver Pact Forces approach a CAA capital city, the possibility of a nuclear strike would be on the table, depending on the circumstances and possible consequences. A secret project of the Mexican Army has led to the manufacturing of 30 tactical nuclear warheads. President Cardozo orders that those warheads must be ready for deployment in case of a military defeat. He states that: "The CAA will win this war, may it be by conventional means or not."