March 17th, 2010
In 1996-1997, while working as a veteran detective on an anti-crime task force in my police department I wrote articles for the American Enterprise Institute magazine in Washington. During the same time I wrote a draft manuscript in which the plot consisted of a single question. “What if?” What if the President of the United States was a sleeper agent for the Soviet Union? What if the Soviet Union, no longer communist, was unaware or worse didn’t want him to activate? What if the President decided this was the time to take the country over and remold it into his vision of what America should be? And what if the citizens of the United States had become conditioned not to care?
The plot of the book centers on a small isolated town in Idaho. Farmers and ranchers, all honest hardworking men and women begin to make a stand against a government gone out of control. But unknown to them, they are playing into a trap long planned by a small group of men in Washington D.C. and Moscow. Assisted by two veteran police officers, the townspeople begin to resist the increasingly violent assaults against their town. The book is packed with action with events taking place across the world; from the secret archives of the KGB, to behind closed doors of the White House, to battles in the remote mountains of Idaho. The hero of the book is a veteran detective from Florida, who years earlier encountered another government operation gone wrong. That case cost him his wife, and changed him forever.
Twelve years later, in 2008, the financial bubble finally burst causing trillions of dollars to be lost; people panicked, savings were destroyed and companies teetered on extinction. The government quickly stepped in and for the first time in history began to control large segments of the economy directly, with plans to take over more. Like many of the fifty nine million people who voted for less government in the last election, I found myself unsure of our future. I began to wonder if the question was no longer “What if?” but now simply, “when.” Many, many citizens have an unconscious fear haunting them; they feel something has gone horribly wrong with their nation. The book addresses those fears. I believe that millions of Americans will find the book exciting and full of hope as it reminds us that we are, after all, different than the rest of the world, we are Americans.
March 9th, 2010
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November 8th, 2009
Before Crawford and James reached Rockledge with their prisoner, Childs and Roberts had already had a big day. Early in the morning in a clearing just outside town, they assembled about one hundred and fifty men of all ages. The men were dressed in various types of hunting gear and old military fatigues collected from old trunks and backroom closets; soldiers may finish their tour, but they never leave their past. Roberts watched them as they stood either silent or holding quiet conversations between them. They were armed with all types of weapons: shotguns, semi auto rifles, and bolt action rifles with scopes. Even Tom Barns outfitted himself in his favorite deer hunting camouflage bib overalls. Barns held his old double barrel loosely in his arms as he quietly talked to the man next to him.
At the head of the group, Roberts climbed up on a crate somebody had dragged out and began to speak. “Gentlemen, you have chosen to be here today for a number of reasons. Some of you are here because you are pissed. Some because you feel the government must be reined in. Some here because this is your land and be damned if anyone is going to take it from you.” There were quite a number of affirmative nods from the crowd. “And some of you are here because your friend or your family is here, and you feel obligated to follow.” Roberts paused. “Whatever your reason, I feel that I must tell you what you are up against.” He turned and waved his hand towards Childs standing behind him. “This is John Childs. Some of you might know him, others might not. John has seen more combat than most of us ever dreamed of. He has scouted the area around our town and has something to share with you. Before he gets into the details, let me tell you in short what is happening. I…we believe that the situation here was not an accident gotten out of hand. It is part of a plan bigger than we may even suspect. The problem is that no one but us seems to believe it. I fear that we are going to be made an example of and that means that those people wanting to make that example are coming here. They aren’t going to be friendly, and I don’t think they will be looking for prisoners. You see, the trouble with prisoners is that sooner or later they get to tell their side of the story.
“Like Waco.” A man shouted from the crowd. Roberts recognized the man as being from an isolated ranch north of town. Roberts remembered him as pulling no punches as to how he felt about the intruding government.
Roberts held up his hand. “I am not sure if the two can be compared. But the end result may be the same. The fact we can’t communicate with the outside world is no accident. I believe somebody only wants one side of the story told… and that is their side.” Roberts looked at the crowd of men. He had their total attention now. “Gentlemen, most of you have known me for better than fifteen years. Some of you have known me since I was a kid. I’m not afraid to say I’m a little scared. This is very serious. The only way I can see us getting out of this in one piece is to hold together. We have to outlast them and keep them off of us until the truth gets out. We are working on that right now. John here will be in charge of the tactical commands. He has already gotten with a few of you that are helping with the roadblocks. One of them reported back that there is some more activity on the north road.” Roberts looked at the men, his jaw set in grim resolve. “Whatever is going to happen may happen soon. Nobody is going to be upset if any of you decided to sit this out. But if you stay, mean it. We can’t afford to have anyone bugging out at the last minute.”
Roberts waited for someone to speak. Finally, a voice came from an old rancher standing in the back. “Hank, you mind getting down? We need to get started, and time’s a wasting.” The crowd laughed at the comment. Roberts smiled. He had to say what he did, but he knew in his heart there would be no quitters in this crowd. It is their land after all. Isn’t that the point?
October 18th, 2009
The college boy also agreed. ”Yeah, all we should have left when this first started. I would have been home by now. This isn’t my fight. These guys are all nuts. The government isn’t out to get them.” Again the two longhaired, mid-aged, hippies nodded in agreement.
The column slowly came around a rocky point. The college kid’s young eyes were first to pick out the low flying helicopters approaching out of the sun. ”Hey, look here comes the Calvary now.” The businessman instructed the kid to stop. They got out and waved to the helicopters which now had slowed to a hover several hundred yards away. The businessman straightened his green polo shirt and tan pants; it always paid to look good when dealing with unknown competition. Then he held up his hands and pointed to the white flags in the cars. Others were getting out of their stopped vehicles and were starting to wave.
Seminko leaned over the pilot and looked through the windshield. He could see the ten or so cars parked in the middle of the road. There were figures waving and pointing to the limp white rags. Fools. Stupid, weak fools. Seminko knew what he had to do. He punched the button on his throat mike and gave the instructions to both helicopters.
The college boy watched as the two helicopters banked away from each other and began to fly towards them. At three hundred yards he saw the nose of the ships dip down. The boy realized they weren’t going to land. At one hundred and fifty yards the first burst from the thirty caliber mini-gun mounted under the wings of the first chopper raked the car and hit the businessman squarely in the head blowing brain matter all over the front of the car. The one old hippie yelped and went down, blood soaking through his genuine earth friendly tan hemp shirt. The other one, stoned by now, stood looking at his fallen friend and said, “Hey man, that isn’t very cool at all.”
September 14th, 2009
When I wrote the book I asked myself how could you create enough fear to make people willing to let the government control their lives in exchange for “security.” First the government would have to create an enemy. Then it would have to create an incident proving the threat the enemy poses.
It was the Friday morning rush hour in the downtown New York subway. People crowded together as they pushed and prodded their way along the subway platform. The people were too concerned about their own problems to have noticed two dark haired men put down identical paper bags at each end of the platform near the exits. The two men then slowly worked their way out to the stairs leading to the surface. As they met at the top one man reached into his pocket and pulled out a small radio transmitter. He flipped a switch and noted the red light went on as expected. He lifted a safety cover over another switch and flipped it up. Immediately, two low level explosions could be heard coming from the subway followed by screams. The two men walked quickly away from the location before the gas could make its way to the surface. A lethal cloud of nerve gas quickly filled the platform killing hundreds of men, women and children. Within minutes a recorded voice would call the local NBC affiliate and claim responsibility for the attack. It would say that the battle for freedom had started. The militias had declared war.
July 7th, 2009
The blonde four year old girl picked up her favorite doll and stuck it back into the baby buggy she was pushing. She shook her finger at the doll and chastised her for not staying in the buggy, just like her mother did her on the days they went to the mall. She laughed and kissed the doll, forgiving all transgressions. She turned her head and looked up at the sky when she heard a deep thumping whine coming from the backside of the mountain behind her house. The noise grew louder as a dark shadow swept over her. The little girl looked up in time to see a black helicopter, with missile pods hung under its wings, swing low over her neighborhood, bank hard and then begin a straight run down her street.
Her mother was watching her daughter through the kitchen window when she saw and heard the same thing. The mother dropped a glass shattering it in the sink. She started to run for the door, yelling her daughter’s name. “Sally, Sally, come here honey!” The mother tried to control the panic in her voice. She didn’t want to scare the child but at the same time she wanted the girl to react quickly. Sally heard her mother and picked up her doll so she could go. Sally froze as she looked up at the noisy funny looking bird. It was flying right at her.
July 7th, 2009
At two a.m. Sunday morning, three unmarked Humvees, an armored personnel carrier and two large box trucks drove down a two lane road that ran through a town thirty miles south of Rockledge. The only witnesses to the small column were a couple of barking dogs. Had someone been around to take a closer look they would have noticed the grim faced soldiers inside the vehicle wore no insignias on their uniforms. The vehicles drove toward Wyatt County on one of the only three roads into the county.
At the same time two other identical columns were making their way in similar fashion along the other two roads. Approximately two hours later the columns halted just inside the county line. One truck continued up the access road to the sole cellular tower servicing the area. Another truck drove on to the repeater station that carried the local police channels. The rest of the column trucks parked in a flat area alongside the road. The soldiers jumped out and began taking up defensive positions around the vehicles. One soldier opened the back of the truck to reveal a bank of communications equipment with several soldiers at the controls. Another soldier strapped himself in a lineman’s belt and gaffs then climbed up to the top of the telephone pole next to the truck. After a few minutes he signaled down to the people inside the truck. At the cell tower and repeater station, the soldiers exploded charges at the base of the towers knocking them down. Wyatt County was cut off.
July 1st, 2009
Fontaine had a few problems, as he liked to call them- “growing pains” during his first term in office. He had a tendency to appoint people with less than perfect backgrounds. Some of them made it through, but others had to be cut out. Fontaine was secretly pleased with the level of forgiveness in the American voting populace, especially when you promised them things they wanted to hear. Publicly, he was a stalwart defender of the little guy. Privately, he felt that most if not all average Americans were idiots and fools. This is one of the reasons he felt compelled to lead them into the new era. Fontaine was careful though; only a select trusted few around him knew how he felt.
President Tyler Fontaine was a tall angular athletic man of fifty two. His dark straight hair was kept short and combed back in a suave fashion. The women loved him, especially those in the media and entertainment world. He could be very convincing and persuasive. Some people swore could talk a nun out of her habit. But at the moment, Fontaine wasn’t thinking about sex. He was sitting back in the thick leather chair at the head of the long dark oak table. A number of important people were also seated around it. Fontaine was holding a meeting in one of the secure rooms in the White House. He picked the room because he was sure there were no bugs or other surveillance devices that would be able to record anything said inside. Absolute secrecy was necessary for his plan to work. Fontaine surveyed the group he had ordered there. He, like all the men there except one, were dressed in the obligatory dark suit and power tie. At the table to his left sat George Chandris, secretary of Treasury and the mastermind behind the monetary policies. Next to him was the deputy director of the FBI Robert Johnson. To Johnson’s left was the only man not dressed in civilian clothes, he was the key to it all. That man was the head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Army General Vladimir Chechecko, a second generation Yugoslavian, whose father was a great freedom fighter in World War Two. His uniform displayed numerous medals regaling Chechecko’s almost thirty year service. Across from the three sat two other men, Daniel Stoner the Secretary of the Interior and Walter Weedman the Majority leader of the Senate.
June 23rd, 2009
Through his sniper scope Crawford counted ten men either sitting in or standing behind the five green Humvees parked in a line on the one side of the road. The men standing in front of the Humvees were all dressed in the standard digital camouflage BDUs issued by the army. But this group consisted of federal agents; part of the negotiating team agreed upon earlier. About fifty yards away parked on the opposite side of the road were Crawford’s people, all standing next to their old Ford and Chevy pickups. Mostly ranchers and farmers, the men were all dressed in jeans and regular shirts, their heads covered from the sun with beat up cowboy hats and faded ball caps. The two groups were faced off, like a couple bulls deciding who owned the territory they stood on, which in essence was what this was all about.
I hope they don’t decide to fight over it, Crawford thought. Things could get real ugly. Crawford caught a slight motion from James. He glanced over and saw James motion with just his finger slowly to the far ridge. “We’ve got company,” he whispered.
Crawford slowly swung his scope over onto the ridge were James had pointed. Sure enough he caught a quick flash of light coming from some scrub brush on the edge of the far ridge. It was a reflection of sunlight bouncing off either binoculars or a scope. Damn! If they had snipers on their side they must figure on some trouble. He looked back at James with a question on his face. James whispered, “I’ll take the ridge. You cover the targets. Radio in that this looks shitty.”