A story 25 years in the making, A Graphic Novel combining elements of Dystopian Futurism, Cyberpunk, and Fantasy. Story and Art by Ted Lody.
In This alternate reality, The United States suffers a series of devastating and demoralizing defeats during the Cold War. North Korea annexes the south and Korean unifies the entire peninsula at the end of a bloody war. The United States alone suffers 265,000 causalities before withdrawing from the conflict. United Nations signs an armistice in 1954.
After 13 days of an intense standoff with Cuba and the Soviet Union in 1962, the United States withdraws its naval blockade of the island nation. This allows Russian ships to unload additional nuclear ordinance and over 350,000 troops; shifting the balance power in the Caribbean and Latina America.
The United States Enters the Vietnam War in 1964. This conflict results in an even greater defeat for the US, with over 475,000 causalities. An armistice is signed in 1969 ending the war. A unified Vietnam annexes Cambodia, Laos, Burma, and Thailand. After the end of the Vietnam War, the US economy enters into a series of long-lasting recessions, fast approaching post-1929 levels, with Unemployment steady above 11%. After Vietnam, the budget for the Department of Defense is cut drastically. Hundreds of foreign US bases are closed. The United States officially withdraws from NATO is 1978; unable to keep its commitments to its allies. Vietnam consolidates nearly all the opium production in Southeast Asia by 1971, creating a virtual monopoly by 1980.
In the mid-1960s there is a spike in illicit narcotic use in the US. By 1970, one out of six Americans will become chronic drug addicts. Among these new addicts are servicemen returning from Vietnam. Latina American and Asian Drug Cartels grow in power and influence with more efficient growth, production, and distribution techniques. By 1980 one out of five Americans will become addicted, one out of four by 1990. Many unemployed Americans affected by the ongoing economic climate turn to crime to support their drug habits.
President Richard Nixon is assassinated in 1970, before sighing The Controlled Substances Act. The Nixon administration was planning to create a new government agency: The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA.) The Controlled Substances Act would allow the government to lawfully and systematically target and incarcerate select groups of the population. These select groups who receive harsher sentences from the courts.
By 1980 several Latin American countries are directly and openly controlled by Drug Cartels. These Cartels gain the support of the people by reinvesting drug profits back into their economics and improve local infrastructure. Most of these countries enjoy free health care, free education, and free public housing. Columbia nationalizes its Cocaine industry in 1977, the same year Pablo Escobar is elected President. Columbia’s GDP in 1985 passes France and Great Britain.