I'm going to drag in real world events, then twist and shape them to my liking. That's what is fun about alt-history projects. Maybe I've said this before, but I'm generally conservative in my political views. Not that I'm really thrilled with the current batch of dumbasses representing the current conservative movement. Once a politician goes to Washington DC, they are pretty much done as a decent human being. They become bought and sold puppets of grander entities.
I'm going to pretty much tear into Comrade Obama pretty savagely. And it ain't because he's black (half black, actually); race doesn't have anything to do with his politics. I believe that he is quite adept at using race as a political tool.
Fear not, George W. Bush is going to get roasted as well. Well, maybe not him so much as Rumsfeld and Cheney, the puppet masters behind Bush. Billy-Bob Clinton is going to get his share of crap as well. George HW Bush and Reagan may get a little hit as well.
So let's get this crazy ride going.
First off, the 80's line and nearly all of the characters have to be nearly disavowed. I need most of these people in the here and now and they don't need 30+ years added to their lives. I've discussed this before - most of the original 13 GI Joe's were 'Nam vets. Sorry guys, but you're too old in 2016.
But what about Cobra? What was the deal back in the 80's? Here are my thoughts. Yes, there was a terrorist organization back in the 80's, but the U.S. was at its military might back then. President Reagan was outspending the Soviets and economically crushed communism. The military was huge and powerful! Some petty-ass two-bit terrorist group didn't stand a chance and the masterminds behind that group knew it. There was no way that they stood a chance. There was one weapon that could be used and would ultimately prove to be quite deadly and very successful. Time.
Reagan's America crushes this nascent terrorist organization and the leadership goes underground and, at the same time, public. The economic boom of the late 80's and 90's allowed for a new battlefield; one of economics and industry. Cobra Industries, Broca Brothers, ARBCO, Extensive Enterprises, and several other companies arise, becoming global economic powerhouses. Secretly, in the shadows, they begin to build their armies. There is no single "Cobra Commander," there are councils of leaders.
The next step is to infiltrate society at its core, and begin to tear it apart from within. What does this shadowy organization want? World domination? Maybe, but that's a helluva' lot of paperwork. As Shield/Hydra Leader Alexander Pierce says in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, "To build a better world, sometimes means tearing the old one down..." Chaos, war, violence - and out of the ashes, Cobra will arise and serve as the leadership for a new era.
I've had these ideas about an insidious Cobra organization for quite a while and my thoughts were only enhanced by the direction that IDW took Cobra. Recently, on a Facebook group, the question was asked about people's views of Cobra. I posted something a bit lengthy, similar to this current writing, but someone else posted quite eloquently their view of Cobra that just nailed it.
From Christopher Galletta Stevens:
"Financiers and bank/currency -manipulating billionaires who use their wealth to manipulate the politicians, media and schools to brainwash the masses and government programs as vote-enticing handouts into giving them total control, while portraying the good guys as the villains in the news media, schools, movies and television. One may say ISIS, but in reality, Cobra would either buy off ISIS leaders to help promote fear and division, or blame their opposition for their existence, not actually be terrorists themselves. The Joes would be portrayed as evil pro-war military and Cobra would do everything in their power to get them legally defunded and turn the public against it, effectively eliminating all resistance to their rule. They would infiltrate everything and become politicians, teachers, news media sources, screenwriters, song writers... Controlling the many via the influential few."
That's beautiful right there and it aligns with my thoughts so well.
Let's move the narrative along. The infiltration into society has begun. The next key event that has to be discussed are the events of September 11th, 2001. That event, for a while, pushed me into conspiracy theory craziness. Not that I'm entirely over it, but I think the official story is full of shit. The key element that seems to draw the ire of some people is the disbelief that their government would do that sort of thing to the citizens of their country.
Do I think the US government is willing and capable of undertaking such a horrific event and murder thousands of people for political and economic reasons? Hell yes. So, in my alt world, is the US government responsible for the events of 9/11? Yes... and No. Not the larger public face of the government, but the infiltrated elements of Cobra within the US government. George W. Bush? No. Rumsfeld and Cheney? Yes. Bought and sold Cobra agents.
Cobra began infiltrating society as soon as their terrorist army experiment failed. Late Reagan years, onward through the Bush and Clinton years.
This post is getting a bit long right now and I'm going to wrap up for now. Here's the current status: Cobra infiltrating society on a global level, with an emphasis on the U.S. The events of 9/11 have occurred and the population is in full-on patriotic fervor.
Next time, let's roll into the wars in the Middle East and onward into the Obama
TL;DR - Reboot GI Joe into the modern era and make it hurt.