The Global War on Terror, otherwise known as the War of Liberation and World War III by some individuals, was a semi-global conflict of the 21st century. The war began when a man known as Deathstrike created the Global Liberation Army and invaded the country of Aldastan, a union between Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan against heavy opposition from the population. The war spread throughout Asia, Africa, Europe and even North America, until it culminated with the European Insurrection of 2028. The war was the most destructive conflict of the 21st century, and among the 10 most deadliest wars of history.
The fighters of the Global Liberation Army called the war the War of Liberation, due to their belief the war would culminate with their rule of most of Eurasia and the establishment of a new empire free from corruption and imperialism. Mohmar was a smart man and knew this was not possible, and simply wanted to end China's exploitation of his ancestral homeland. The West called the war the Global War on Terror, a continuation of the War on Terror from the early 21st century. The leaders of the countries of the West never expected a fundamentalist organization to be able to put up such a fight, and didn't want to give them the honor and call the war World War III. Thus, they settled on and expanded the War on Terror to a global war. Many people still refer to it as World War III, and the actual World War III as World War IV, contradicting Albert Einstein's belief that WWIV would be fought with sticks and stones.
Mohmar 'Deathstrike' as he was known had been part of a militant group in the country of Kazakhstan for several years. He rose through the ranks of the group and eventually found himself at the top. He had a vision: To end the world of capitalism and establish a new empire under his rule, where the world would find peace. He needed a good trigger event to show off his army's might, and when the two countries of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan united to form Aldastan under heavy opposition in 2017, he created the Global Liberation Army. Originally a loose amalgamation of fundamentalists, rebels and tribesmen who picked up arms for Mohmar's cause, it expanded and included extreme organizations such as the fanatical Brotherhood of the White Falcon under Abdul bin Yusuuf, and was supplied arms by vicious dealers Dr. Thrax and Anwar Sulaymaan. The GLA invaded the Central Asian republics and even China, with the help of rogue PLA brigadier general Ismail Khan. They got their hands on a smuggled nuclear weapon, and detonated it on the 70th Anniversary of the People's Republic, triggering the war.
Course of the War
The war lasted for 9 years, from 2019-2028. The war had actually been fought since 2017, since Mohmar and his army invaded Aldastan, but is most widely regarded to have begun when the 5-kiloton nuclear warhead was detonated in Beijing in 2019. The GLA had smuggled weapons, munitions, and manpower into the troubled regions of China years before, and when Mohmar raised the call they all took up arms and began fighting all throughout Asia, in order to take the Chinese by surprise. The GLA were so successful, they even managed to capture the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Center in the middle of the city, and destroy the Tsing Ma Landmark Bridge in the process. The PLA soon rallied their forces though, and launched an offensive all over China orchestrated by 'The Tigress' General Leiong Leang. The PLA had their most experienced commanders at the front, including Ta Hun Kwai, Shin Fai and Tsing Shi-Tao. The first battle of the war was the Battle of Beijing, where the future general Xing Chen rose from the rubble of the Forbidden City and held the red flag, which spawned the Red Guard auxiliary division. The parade army loaded their guns and swept the GLA away from Beijing, destroying their nuclear bunker they had captured just outside the city. Beijing was subsequently fortified and barricaded from other attacks.
Over the next few years, many more battles raged in China. The Battle of Hong Kong saw the GLA destroyed in Hong Kong, but destroyed the Convention Center they had captured and the Tsing Ma Bridge. The GLA weren't the ones who did damage though, the PLA themselves laid waste to the countryside in order to subjugate their enemies. Utilizing the scorched earth tactic, Chinese forces burned farmland through massive use of incendiary and nuclear weapons, which had been authorized after their 'first strike' policy. A Black Lotus agent even issued the controversial order to destroy the Three Gorges Dam, flooding the GLA and the local village. The initial fighting was fierce and deadly, causing huge losses to both the PLA and GLA.
In the UN, the Security Council had ordered the United States military to intervene, but they didn't launch their first attack until the fighting in China had largely calmed down. When the GLA were rid from China, Operation 'Red Arrow' was launched by General Leang, sending nearly two million soldiers into Central Asia. Aldastan felt the full force of the invasion, and thousands of civilians died, maybe even more by PLA soldiers than the GLA. The Aldastani government was toppled by GLA activists before they were able to call the PLA attack off, and as such many cities were bombed to ruins. The United States Air Force was mostly responsible for the destruction of Balykchy, but Chinese propaganda and falsified media put the blame on the GLA that had booby trapped the entire town with I.E.D.s and infamous 'demo traps'. Fighting spilled into the Middle East, and when Iraq fell to the GLA, the US was convinced. Operation 'Final Justice', the third invasion of Iraq, was launched from the Persian Gulf and US-allied Saudi Arabia. The operation was seen as controversial back home, since the Obama administration had ordered all US military presence from Iraq removed in 2011. The Battle of Baghdad of 2025 saw the true face of the war, when a civilian filmed nine chemical missiles raining down on civilians in the market square; the strike was initially aimed at the nearby US base, but the GLA commander grossly misaimed, and the strike only briefly delayed US forces as they awaited the chemicals to dissipate. The YouTube-video gained thousands of view in its first day, until it was taken down by the NSA.
Several battles and operations followed throughout the Middle East, such as a search and rescue operation in Al Hanad, a frontal assault on a beachhead on the Caspian Sea coast and the epic Battle of Akmola. The War had a great effect on the countries of the Middle East. Iran, for example, was in a period of civil war in 2026 between government loyalists, extreme nationalists and GLA supporters. The United States intervened in the civil war, siding with the nationalists believing their victory would recreate the Republic of Persia and bring them another ally in the Middle East. The US' most trusted ally in the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, grew a heated tension between it and Iran. The civil war in Iran escalated, and eventually pushed Saudi Arabia into the conflict when Saudi airliners were shot down over Iranian airspace. When the US retreated from the theatre, the war escalated into a full-blown nuclear engagement, which forced both countries to push their entire population to fight. What followed was the destruction of the only desalination plants near the Persian Gulf Coast, thus cutting off the entire Arabian Peninsula of its water supply. This war led to the most casualties of all, with over 15 million civilian and military deaths.
In 2024, Colonel Francis Thorn and his 1st Special Operations Group was tasked with securing intel about a Russian arms shipment to Iran. They found something even more sinister: The so-called Sulaymaan-Baluyev Affair, where it was revealed the Russian Federation was supplying vehicles, arms and ammunition to the Global Liberation Army. Baluyev was killed in the subsequent air raid, but none of the remains were identified to be Sulaymaan's. This led to an internal political feud in the Federation, where the opposition leader Suvorov called the current government a post-Soviet oligarchy, and that the nation must rise against the traitors in the Kremlin. What followed was the Presidential Elections of 2028, where Suvorov won by a landslide and promised to set the Federation on a new path. The assets provided to the GLA were confiscated by the end of 2026, but Sulaymaan was nowhere to be found.
General Mohmar understood he couldn't succeed without the aid of greater assets. So, in 2025, he ordered his most elite force to attack the Baikonur Cosmodrome. After a successful assault that saw both the American and Chinese bases captured and their assets put into terrorist hands (not the least of which included an air force, particle cannon technology, nuclear warheads, and advanced drone technology), the GLA stood victorious at the base of the main launch platform, and subsequently launched a chemical missile towards Tel Aviv, Israel. The shock of the explosion threw the US-allied state into a short period of anarchy, before the government decided to take all control of the country and establish a defensive coalition. The Russian Federation moved in and mounted an offensive against their former space center, in order to make the population favor them after the Baluyev fiasco a year earlier. The attack failed, and Russia backed out after their first offensive, but the elusive chemist Dr. Thrax still had contacts in the country. A bio-weapons research facility was located near Mt. Elbrus in the Caucasus. A joint-operation between the famed American war hero Colonel Burton and a Chinese Black Lotus agent put a stop to the illegal weapons development and buried it under fifty tons of snow. The cosmodrome was still under GLA control though, even after yet another attempt to recapture it, this time by the Chinese, and they launched another chemical rocket towards Narvik, Norway, where a US navy task force was picking up supplies. The United States and Norwegian special forces retaliated, and it resulted with the destruction of the last remaining launch platform by dropping a GBU/43 M.O.A.B. directly on top of it. By this time, though, Russia had moved to a new space center, and allowed Baikonur to be abandoned.
However, the US/Chinese alliance didn't stop, and eventually drove the GLA away from the Middle East and Central Asia at the end of 2026. The surviving GLA managed to invade North Africa, and not even infighting in the GLA's ranks could stop them. Several commanders of the GLA stayed behind in the Middle East, such as Dr. Thrax. This was fortunate, because the American submarine USS Oregon was able to identify a GLA stronghold on the coast of Oman, where Dr. Thrax had captured four biochemical warheads. He had them poised to strike at Washington DC, New York, Philadelphia, and Atlanta, but a quick US-led contingent of American troops and GLA defectors saw the evil genius killed in action. This was when the war really approached the West, putting pressure on Europe. One incident in Crete saw the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier destroyed by their own Particle Cannon, a battle that also saw the Mediterranean Fleet destroyed and forced the evacuation of Crete after radiation was released from the Reagan. The United States retaliated with full force, but the GLA were clever. After the death of Dr. Thrax, his experimental chemicals were confiscated by the Americans. Led by Jarmen Kell, a band of thieves stole the barrels of chemicals from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California, a raid that also saw Livermore, CA leveled and all of its citizens brutally massacred, including women and children, an act the GLA broadcast live on social media accounts. Believing their home defense has been broken, President Paulson ordered all overseas troops to pull back, most prominently Europe and the Pacific. This gave the GLA much needed rest, and they were able to topple the regimes in North Africa through bloody revolutions.
Now, with America out of the war and China busy battling rebels in Central Asia, the GLA and their leader Deathstrike launched their grand plan. In 2028, many cargo ships arrived in the port of Hamburg. Due to a clash between milltant protestors and police, the harbor guards were watching the gates instead of the ships. Hundreds of rebels disembarked from the ships and unloaded tons of war materials into Hamburg. Through propaganda, the GLA were able to encite many Middle Eastern refugees, that had fled the war in the Middle East to Europe but were denied social rights by the corrupt EU government. The GLA military and violent rioters utterly destroyed the German infrastructure and with it the European economy. After several weeks of desperate struggle, the EU finally called for the Chinese to intervene. The PLA were just finished in Central Asia and launched their liberation of Germany. They first landed in the Free Republic of Bavaria that had ceded one year ago, and pushed the GLA back. Bloody battles in Coburg, Berlin and Stuttgart cost many lives, but what cost the most was the destruction of Hamburg. General Shin Fai of the PLA Marine Corps spearheaded to Hamburg to capture Mohmar 'Deathstrike', but the fanatical bombmaker Rodall Juhziz stayed in the city and detonated a nuclear warhead, annihilating the GLA, the Chinese and the city. When the fighting had stopped and the GLA had retreated, many agree that the war had culminated and it was over.
The largest army of the war was the People's Liberation Army of China. Clocking in at just over five million soldiers, the army operated all throughout Asia, splitting into smaller divisions and battalions the further away they got from their homeland. Following the destruction of the Forbidden City in Beijing, a soldier who was dressed in the revolutionary uniforms of the Red Guard, rose from the rubble and held the flag of the PRC. Inspired by his act of glory, the surviving members of the party decided to create an auxiliary unit called the Red Guard, that used old reserved weapons and the brown-green uniforms from the 70s. This unit had a staggering number of six million volunteers, who all unfortunately believed the war would be won within several months. Nonetheless, the PLA caused much destruction across Central Asia, thanks to their liberal use of nuclear weapons they believed they had the right to fire since the GLA used one first, backed by their 'first strike' policy.
Supporting the PLA was the United States Armed Forces, with around four million soldiers in total. The Army was responsible for operations in Central Asia, moving in from the then-allied Azerbaijan. The Marine Corps and Army were the main fighting force in the Middle East as well, where the USMC was part of a P.O.W. rescue in Al Hanad, Yemen. The US Air Force also participated by flying in air strikes and bombing runs, but also dropping several thousand paratroopers over the Amisbad Oil Fields during the climactic battle. Utilizing the famous 'Shock and Awe' tactic orchestrated by General Malcolm "Ace" Granger of the USAF, they bombed countless swats of farmland and cities across the Middle East. Of course, when the United States retreated they left their responsibilities to the Middle Easterners and forgot about them.
Opposing them was officially three organizations: The Global Liberation Army, the Brotherhood of the White Falcon, led by Abdul bin Yusuuf, and the local militia of the Uyghur people, led by Chinese defector Ismail Khan. The GLA did most of the fighting, being able to absorb any human capable of wielding a weapon into their ranks. White Falcon did not have a standing army so-to-speak, but were responsible for countless suicide bombings, chemical attacks and propaganda all over Eurasia and North America. This brought in countless people to fight for Mohmar's cause, or his personal war, as Yusuuf stated. The GLA caused just more casualties than the PLA, but Chinese propaganda made it look like they were the only responsible.
Being the most destructive conflict of the 21st century, the Global War on Terror of course had a major impact on the future of the world. Most notable, the 'West' as seen in the eyes of Mohmar was destroyed when the USA retreated from Europe and entered isolation, and the EU economy crashed after the insurrection. Mohmar was assassinated by an unknown assailant in his safehouse in 2032. Immediately following the insurrection in Europe was more chaos. The four-party 'Europakoalition' in Germany was deposed of by the military and a military government was established. The royal family in the Netherlands took control of the country, and protestors in France proclaimed the Sixth Republic. Europe was shocked and would never be the same again. The governments turned towards their rescuers, China, for assistance. China agreed to aid them if they could have permanent military bases on the continent, and the EU agreed. Many of the regions that ceded during the War now returned to their parent countries, such as Bavaria. China assisted in the reconstruction of the Central European infrastructure, and established the Eurasian Unity League.
A frenchman known as Tahar Ibrahiim dumped several tons of chemical waste into the lower Rhine-Ruhr area, polluting the land and making it uninhabitable until at least 2060. Chemical cleanup crews were sent to the region, but not even the slightest chemical spill could be completely removed. Crewmembers who returned reportedly had large infections on their face, palms and back, even with protection. They also say forests became "naked", as all greenery died.
With the GLA incursion into California in 2027, President Paulson of the USA believed the American guard had been penetrated and was vulnerable, and thus ordered all overseas soldiers back home, leaving their allies. This led to many wars following the retreat, such as the 3rd Korean War, many brushfire conflicts in the Middle East and the unfinished anti-terrorist war in Somalia. However, with little support overseas, the United States was able to cut its budget thanks to smart deals executed by the new President Kevin O'Connor in 2032, and he approached the neighbors Mexico and Canada with a proposal. The North American Union was founded the same year, stabilizing the American economy and putting them back in the world.
Now, much of the European economy had been restored and their infrastructure was repaired. The new governments of the Europe promptly thanked the Chinese and founded the European Continental Alliance in 2034. Without the needs of the Chinese, they ordered them to leave the continent but they were still in debt to them, so they kept close relations since.
The GLA themselves rallied over their victory in North Africa. However, their leader Mohmar 'Deathstrike' believed his final deed has been done and retired in his safehouse in Georgia. In 2032, he was assassinated by an unknown gunman via sniper rifle. The mystery behind his death remains to this day, with rumors on the internet pointing at the Americans, the Chinese, the Israeli Mossad and even Yusuuf, who was critical in the 'European gambit' because he would have liked to unite the countries of the Middle East under a new caliph instead. Without their leader, the various cells and organizations within the Global Liberation Army fought over control of the army. This continued well into the 2030s, until Anwar Sulaymaan took charge of Deathstrike's most willing supporters. He went on a crusade against the opposing factions and either absorbed them or destroyed them. Most notably, Prince Kassad's Cobra Cell was finally destroyed after two betrayals, and all their technology was confiscated. The North African pro-GLA regimes were toppled when the ECA invaded North Africa in 2037 under Operation Nemesis.