So thanks to @AndyD273, I am now able to provide a coherent scenario of the situation I proposed earlier. So, here goes nothing....

Brief summary first: Pakistan falls into a civil war, followed by a group of Iranian terrorists stealing a nuclear device. Trump is reelected, inauguration day results in the stolen nuclear device going off. Secretary of State is later inaugurated as POTUS, and tries to start WWIII. He is deposed and killed in a coup d'etat, which results in California leaving the Union, along with Washington and Oregon (who later form Cascadia), and ending with Texas. At the same time, an armed insurrection emerges in the remaining US States, some of which side with the insurgents, and some which side with Mattis. The result is chaos. Now for the big details.

In late 2019 (originally late 2017), Pakistan falls into a civil war following anti-government protests turning violent and later spawning an insurrection. This results in its nuclear arsenal being vulnerable to terrorists who might take advantage of the situation. Months later, the Pakistani government a missing 40 kt nuclear device from Pakistan, which concerns the international community. Efforts begin to search for the missing warhead. Meanwhile, in the US, Trump is barely elected to a second term in office by the electoral college (which worsens an already problematic political divide).

On inauguration day, the stolen 40 kt nuclear device is detonated on Washington DC, killing Trump, Pence, most of Congress, the Supreme Court and the majority of Trump's cabinet. 258,260 casualties are reported initially, followed by at least an additional 210,000 deaths by radiation poisoning. Tillerson, Mattis, Perry and Carson are all that remain. Tillerson is inaugurated as POTUS in the temporary capital of Philadelphia, whom vows to bring vengeance on the people responsible for the destruction of Washington DC. Just as Tillerson is about to order a nuclear strike, Mattis initiates a military coup d'etat against Tillerson on the 2nd of February of 2021, fearing the outbreak of WWIII and the destruction of the US by Tillerson. Tillerson is killed, and Mattis forms the office of the Secretary of General Affairs, weeks later, with him filling the role, and Joseph Dunboard (former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff) takes the office of President, now purely symbolic. The new Mattis government, prior to the creation of the office of Secretary of General Affairs, begins an investigation into who is responsible for the attack.

However, in response to the coup, angry Americans protest against the new Mattis government, who responds with lethal force on American protesters, which later become armed insurrectionists. Some state governors later join the insurrection, as some National Guard units turn on Mattis, while the Western US decides to leave the Union, forming the Cascadian Republic and the Republic of California respectively. Texas quickly joins in and declares the Second Republic of Texas. In the remaining US states, some of the armed insurrectionists begin to organise themselves into multiple groups with the assistance of some local National Guard units and state governors, while others, already old political parties, became part of the insurrection:

  • New Sons of Liberty (Libertarians, mostly concentrated in the remainder of the American Southwest)
  • Free America Army (old Tillerson loyalists, whom have fled into the countryside after the Philadelphia Putsch, and Tillerson's death during that time frame)
  • United Democratic Front (a coalition of armed Democratic and Republican members in the US)
  • Popular Front (A left-wing insurgency concentrated in the left-leaning US states)
  • People's Liberation Army of America (A small, Maoist terrorist group)
  • Communist Party of the United States of America (an old third party before the Last Inauguration and now a terrorist group)
  • Free Dixieland Movement (Neo-Confederates that have banded together to fight Mattis' government, using the opportunity to restore the Confederacy)
  • American Nazi Party (the old Neo-Nazi Party in the United States, now taking advantage of the chaos to grow into a fully armed insurrection).

By late 2021, with some National Guard units and even Army divisions fighting Mattis' government side by side with the insurgents, and the independence of California, Cascadia and Texas, the Second US Civil War begins.

So, which major foreign powers are likely to get involved in terms of supplies, funding and aid to either side in in the conflict?

NOTE: This is Part I of a series of questions I plan to deal with regarding foreign interference in a hypothetical Second US Civil War. Part II will deal with a more direct intervention by foreign powers, while Part III will detail UN involvement.

WARNING and DISCLAIMER: CPUSA and the ANP are ACTUAL political parties as of 2017, for those of you not living in the States or in case you are too lazy to do the research. In my case, I had to do some research. This post is purely intended to ask questions in regards to the creation of a fictional world, so do not take this seriously.


Short Answer

"Which foreign powers are likely to get involved"

All foreign powers with an interest in USA affairs.

Primary Diplomatic Actors

US Allies 1. United Kingdom (Aid & Back Tillerson) 2. France (Aid & Back Tillerson) 3. Canada (Aid & Back Tillerson) 5. Germany (Aid & Back Tillerson) 6. Japan (Aid & Back Republic of California or Tillerson. Whichever maintains diplomatic relations)

Primary Actors with an Interest in US Affairs

  1. Israel (US backs them w/ military tech and diplomacy)
  2. Mexico (economics)
  3. Russia (Trump policy)
  4. China (economics)
  5. Germany (economics)

Secondary Actors to Note

  1. Global Corporations. Microsoft, Amazon, Wallmart, etc benefit greatly from free trade and diplomacy. How will this affect them?
  2. South Korea (US backs them against N Korea)
  3. South Africa (economics)
  4. Japan (economics and pacific diplomacy): Japan will be in a weird position. A large amount of their US economics is in the west coast and the east coast. Militarily, they rely quite a bit on joint operations with the US Navy to maintain peace in the pacific. Whoever commands the navy would have quite a bit of clout.
  5. The U.S. Navy (what of their naval bases in Hawaii and the west coast?)
  6. The U.S. Airforce (what of their air bases all over the world? What of their space program?)
  7. The CIA and NSA: w/o congressional oversight, they have the means to work with or against Tillerson (or both). Even with the loss of Arlington, VA; they have massive redundancies, blacksites, and black budgets.
  8. The EU would provide Aid, but their diplomatic policy would probably be conservative. I expect they'd back Tillerson in the interest of reforming the USA ASAP.

Note: with Israel, it's important to note that with respect to global jewish populations, Israel contains 6.4M jews, and the U.S. has 5.3-6.8M jews. Any loss of diplomacy between the two of us alienates millions domestically and abroad.

Setting Considerations

Given U.S.A diplomacy and trade, this amounts to an enormous number of countries, but in practice, only a subsection have the means to actively participate as primary actors. The remainder would only have the capacity to participate as secondary or tertiary actors (i.e. small fry). Them you may ignore. Before I suggest a list, I need to point out that given your historical setup, you will need to account for how the trump presidency, nuclear attack, and subsequent unrest would impact global diplomacy and economics. Therefore I think you must consider the following:

  1. How successful was the Trump Presidency in completing his campaign promises? (Colloquially: How dystopian do you want to get?)
  2. Impact of Trump Presidency on Global Diplomacy. Who did we lose as allies, who did we gain?
  3. Impact of Trump Presidency on Global Economics. Who did we screw? Who's benefiting from us?
  4. How did the nuclear weapon impact global politics? How did the UN Security Defense Council Respond? The UN's response? NATO's response? EU?
  5. What was the environmental impact of the nuclear detonation? The radiation explosion would contaminate the Potomac river, which drains into Chesapeake Bay. That in turn will affects every coastal city in maryland and virgina. After some time, the radiated water would spread to the north atlantic coasts including Jersey and new York. Similarly, thanks to the Appalachian Mountains, any irradiated wind would blow north into Jersey and SE Pennsylvania or south into Virignia and Carolina depending on the cyclone direction of the weather systems.
  6. What was the stock market reaction? What happens to the NYSE during the unrest? What is Tillerson doing in regards to that? What about the Federal Reserve? What happens to the value of the U.S. Dollar as fiat currency?
  7. Following the declaration of separate unions, external powers have a choice: recognize the new union as a separate country (and damage relations with Tillerson), or back Tillerson. Consider how external powers recognized the Confederate States of America, or other countries that split of (Taiwan for example).
  8. Jeff made a valid point with respect to military officers and their oath. In order to commit that coup, Tillerson must be characterized as believing his predecessor had committed treason and that he had no choice but to take over himself as opposed to taking proper procedures. (That may be argued as a null argument considering the detonation would've removed most checks and balances).
  9. Checks & Balances. Which government powers remain? Who do they report to? Supreme Court, Circuit of Appeals, DOJ, Governers, etc. Our government is a massive bureaucratic machine. If you take the time to consider and flesh out the complexities involved, you'll obtain incredible depth and realism.
  10. Finally consider how each primary actor would diplomatically respond to the situation? Is it in their best interest to support Tillerson to reform the union? Is it in their interests to support another union? or is it in their interest to feed the unrest and keep the U.S. off balance so that they may exploit the situation?
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you! I will take these questions into consideration as best as I possibly can. $\endgroup$ – Future Historian May 9 '17 at 16:49
  • $\begingroup$ As for UN involvement and foreign powers with direct intervention, that is for Parts II and III. Part I is about foreign powers with intervention limited to supplying weapons and munitions to the secessionists and/or revolutionaries. So..... $\endgroup$ – Future Historian May 9 '17 at 17:06
  • $\begingroup$ Additional update: I implemented some updates based on the questions you have. $\endgroup$ – Future Historian May 9 '17 at 17:10
  • $\begingroup$ Also, an extra read came in and I just noticed: you do realise Tillerson is killed in the coup, correct? $\endgroup$ – Future Historian May 9 '17 at 17:12
  • $\begingroup$ Thanks! I appreciate the feedback! Re. UN & P2/3: I suspected as much, but if you can figure out the basics now, you can develop their intentions early and build towards a climax in later novels. (G.R.R. Martin and Jim Butcher does this). $\endgroup$ – KareemElashmawy May 9 '17 at 17:13

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