After the south lost the first civil war in the 1860's, there remained a bitter resentment for the North that became ingrained in Southern culture. As the decades progressed, these sentiments began to die down. But they never disappeared completely. During the Great Scientific Expansion of the 2040's, the rift between North and South grew once again. The North embraced the new scientific advances, becoming more and more progressive culturally and politically. The South, on the other hand, was very religously oriented and felt that the new scientific advances conflicted with their religious views and as a result rejected much of the ideas of the Great Scientific Expansion.
By the end of the 2040's the cultural rift between North and South was at an extreme. The North perceived Southerners as ignorant, backwards people whose religous dogma made them violent and stubborn. Southerns saw the North as constantly attacking their way of life and felt like they were always under seige. In a historically ironic twist, the two major parties of the United States became divided along North-South lines, only now the Republicans became the party of the South and the Democrats the party of the North. The only thing Northerns and Southerns had in common at this point was that they were both very politically active and always voted along party lines.
Meanwhile, the western United States largely remain aloof of the culture conflicts of the east. By this time, the states north of New Mexico and between Nevada and Iowa has lost much of the resources that they had once supplied to the rest of the nation. Very few people still lived in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain regions of the United States. The west coast, on the other hand, had the highest population density of anywhere in the country. Many people who had once inhabited the east had grown disallusioned with the cultures of the North and South and had migrated to the west. Here they both accepteded the advances of the Great Scientific Expansion and maintained their religious beliefs. Many westerners were not politically active because they felt that the traditional two party system no longer served them. The few who still voted were evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans.
In 2041 a group calling themselves the Defenders of the Faith (DoF) was formed. Their stated goal was to use all means necessary to defend against the attacks they perceived the North was inflicting upon their religious beliefs. In practice, this meant that they were a right-wing, militeristic protestant group that used terror tactics to voice their ideas. The DoF struck first in 2042 with an unsuccessful assassination attempt on the President. The FBI investigated the attack, but were constantly stonewalled by Southern governmental officials, many of whom were suspected DoF members.
In 2043 the DoF detonated the Federal Building in Des Moines, Iowa in attempt to "liberate" Iowans from their Northern opressors, who had only recently taken an interest in Iowa after the discovery of corn-based plastics. Over the next 9 years, the DoF carried out many more terrorist attacks such as assassinations of government officials and the destruction of government buildings, finally culminating the destruction of the Capital Building's rotunda in 2050 (they planned to destroy the entire building but the explosives failed to detonate). Northerns condemn the actions of the DoF and call for increased security measures; Southerns, while not condoning the actions of the DoF, sympathize with their motivations.
The Election of 2052Edit
In the race for the 2052 presidential election, the major issue was the terrorist activities of the DoF. The Democrats nominated a northerner who promised to step up security and pursue the members of the DoF; The Republicans nominated a southerner who promised to passify the DoF by addressing their motivations. The Democrats won in a landslide, sweeping the Presidency and both houses of Congress. South Carolina, claiming that their voice no longer mattered, immediately secceeded from the Union, with the rest of the South following suit shortly after except for Kentucky and Maryland.
The Start of the WarEdit
The newly elected President, citing Abraham Lincoln, invaded the South. After some initial victories, the war quickly bogged down as the Northern armies were ill-equipped to deal with the guerilla warfare employed by the South. As the costs of the war escalated, many northerners became disallusioned with the war. By 2055 most citizens of the North favored ending the war and letting the South have its independance. The President, though, with some clever political manuevering, was able to keep the North in the war.
The western states during this time had remained loyal to the Union. Although as the war ground to a halt, many residents of the pacific coastal states advocated breaking ties with the Union government. Finally, in 2056, the states of California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, and Arizona broke away from the Union to form the Pacific States of America. Given the already costly war with the South, the North decided to let the west states leave. Because of this, the resource production of the remaining western states dropped to almost zero, so the Northern government decided to cut ties with all states west of the Missouri River because keeping them in the Union would drain funds needed to fight the war. Due to their extremely low population density, the states of the Rocky Mountain and Great Plains regions dissolved into city-states where each town and city governed itself with no higher government.
By 2060 the war had grown into a war of attricion, with mounting military and civilian casualties on both sides. The dissent in the North had grown so strong that the President (who had been reelcted in a controversial election in 2058) declared martial law and nullified the constitution, setting up a totalitarian dictatorship in its place.
The End of the WarEdit
Shortly after this, the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation) published a series of photographs depicting the atrocities that the second civil war was inflicting on its citizens. This motivated the United Nations to send peacekeeping forces, spearheaded by the European Union, into the United States to end the war. After a long negotiation, they were able to get the North to agree to pull their forces out of the South and in exchange the United Nations would not protest the new dictatorship in the North. The bargain was widely controversial, but most world leaders agreed that it was necessary.
As part of the negotiation, the former Union government facilities that resided in the South needed to be taken care of. The new Southern government (named the Confederate States of America) agreed to compensate the Northern government for the facilities in the South, so long as they got to keep them. One exception to this were the facilities of the former National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). The North stubbornly refused to drop their asking price from their initial high value, and the South was unable to pay it. As a result, they agreed to privatize the organization so that it could continue its operation in both the North and South. They renamed the organization to the New American Spacing Corporation (NASC).