Apr. 24th, 2017

nodrog: T Dalton as Philip in Lion in Winter, saying “What If is a Game for Scholars” (Alternate History)
[personal profile] nodrog




        “I pledge my allegiance to the flag of the community of American, Soviet,
        and United Nations of the World, and to the principle for which it stands –
        a nation indivisible with others of the Earth, joined in peace, and
        justice for all.
"



"Amerika" Miniseries, 1987


Trailer )



This was an interesting effort, the like of which would not, I believe, be seen again until Amazon's adaptation of P K Dick's The Man in the High Castle

One of the better elements of interest was that the supposed “Soviet victory” was not a 1950s “Red Nightmare,” an instant 1984 treatment - on the contrary, the gerontocracy in the Kremlin were still losing just as they did in reality, the future becoming the present and slipping away from their withered aged hands.  Indeed, just as Jesse Jackson's demands for “reparations” - extorted from those who have never owned slaves and paid to those who have never been slaves - fell down precisely because it would act as a quitclaim and kill the white-liberal-guilt gravy train, so now the ongoing, inherent failure of socialism could no longer be blamed on “the capitalist West,” on the United States in particular, and the Communist Party was losing control everywhere, from Eastern Europe to the “administrative areas” of the conquered USA!  By the end of the story the local authorities, acting now as the lawful government of the new nation of “Heartland,” openly defied and overruled the local Party commissars and actively fought the post-functionally irrelevant UNSSU!  (Who didn't like letting go.)

Though the screenplay was written before 1991, it depicted an eerie parallel with the soon-to-be-real events in the now-former Soviet satellite nations of Eastern Europe.  The United States of America might not return, but the supposedly “downer ending” suggests the new, smaller, more easily accountable nations of its former territory might not have a problem with that!


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As such, it is interesting to compare this to W Streiber and J Kunetka's Fifth Columnist agitprop novel Warday (1984), blurbed by such notable patriots as Sen Edward Kennedy and Dr Helen Caldicott and also describing life in America following a far more severe but still limited strategic nuclear exchange.  A more detailed review will have to await another time, but here too the impression is gradually received that global super-powers are a thing of the past, that the pattern of the future would be smaller, almost feudal nation-states to whom geopolitics is irrelevant.

It might not take a nuclear war to bring that about; a deep and prolonged petroleum crisis could have much the same effect.  By the time it could be resolved people might not want to return to the way things were before.

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althistory: 'What If' - A Game for Scholars (Default)
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