It was day three of the La Raza Revolution. Acrid smoke that stung the nostrils with cordite and death drifted through the empty streets of Los Angeles as people cowered in their homes and some California Army National Guard soldiers patrolled the major arteries in their Bradley AFVs and HUMVEEs.
Sections of Los Angeles burned with demonic force in the Mexican neighborhoods as the fire-fighters dared not venture into those neighborhoods without military escort. As news helicopters circled the devastation filming the fires while staying at an altitude above most gunfire.
Other areas had so far remained untouched though it has come with a price as citizens defended themselves from roving bands of what later investigations would show to be MS-13 initiates being blooded while the senior members directed things. The raging fires were the result of the backlash from the citizens as they counter-attacked and penetrated the strongholds of the Mexican gangs, forcing them on the defensive. Things then became stalemated because neither side was strong enough to win the field.
Where were the LAPD and other municipal police departments during this? Or the California Highway Patrol? Or what of the various county Sheriff Departments? For the first two days all of these law enforcement departments were forced to sort themselves out due to Latino officers suffering ‘Blue Flu’ or even worse some La Raza sympathizers tried to carry out acts of sabotage or theft of law enforcement equipment like bullet proof vests.
It was amidst all of this confusion that Governor Schwarzenegger found himself facing a situation that was like something out of one of his blockbuster political disaster movies. Ignoring the fact he was dooming his future career in politics he acted to preserve California by first calling out the California National Guard to assist local law enforcement throughout the affected areas. Besides the area from Los Angeles south to Tijuana, the only other area of major unrest was in the Imperial Valley as the agriculture union threw off any pretension of being a moderating influence as its leader called upon all its members to rise up and take back their land. Declaring marital law was the second thing that Governor Schwarzenegger did. The third thing he did was call the President requesting assistance from FEMA but not any active duty military assistance. The fourth thing done was the calling of a press conference to announce what he had done and it was carried by ever television and radio station except those who had already thrown their support to the rioters. The news spread faster than wildfire across the Internet.
So by day three, the various police forces had rid themselves of the traitors and those Army Guard units of the Sunburst Division that had seen action in Iraq and Afghanistan were patrolling streets throughout Southern California. The danger areas were still in the Latino sections and for the next two weeks it was the task of the police backed up by the National Guard to clear out the rioters/gang members. Naturally there were not enough jail cells to house all of those arrested in these sweeps so in the desert there arose a tent city surrounded by several concentric rings of concertina wire and guarded by more Army Guard personnel and civilian corrections officers.
Meanwhile the Imperial Valley witnessed ugly altercations as some agriculture workers did rise up and attempted to violently wrest control of some of America’s richest farmland from its rightful owners. More deaths occurred along with cases of arson and looting. Most workers though did not rise up, so the insurrection soon faltered and was extinguished by the time the first National Guard units arrived. The man who called for the violent struggle was found hiding in a bathroom in Golita, far from the battle he started. Meanwhile other agitators like a former candidate for governor fled south to Baja Mexico while waving a clenched fist.
By the end of the month, the insurrection was over. M-1A2 Abram tanks of C Co. 1/185th Armor over watched the shattered steel wall that once faced Tijuana. Other units like 2d Bn, 185th Armor and B Trp, 1/18th CAV patrolled the cities in their armored vehicles while the regular police reclaimed areas where once they could not venture for fear of being murdered by the gangs. Burned out buildings dotted the cityscape as the fire-fighters finally got control of the fires and extinguished them. It would be still more months before a final tally was accomplished but it was done, several square miles of Los Angeles was burnt out ruin and the death toll climbed past 500 just in Los Angeles. The cost forced several insurance companies to fold as it spiraled past $2 billion before stopping at $4.3 billion.
In the states of New Mexico, Arizona, and Texas; similar events tried to erupt but were suppressed far quicker than in California. With cries of ‘Remember the Alamo!,’ the life of the insurrection in Texas was measured in hours as citizens and police smothered the small revolt as units of the Texas ARNG rolled out of Camp Mabry in Austin. Overall, the story of the various National Guards responding to their Governors’ calls to duty was exemplary with few defections as was witnessed by the police as they prevented the insurrection from getting out of control.
In Washington DC, the craven politicians who had decried previous attempts to secure the border moved onto vilifying California’s governor for creating that large holding area in the hope people would be distracted. The speed of recall petitions skyrocketed as average voters across the nation reacted with shock, horror and then bone-deep disgust as the people they thought was representing them instead acted in ways supporting the La Raza Revolution. As fast as they had been in front of cameras screaming to have Schwarzenegger arrested and tried, they backpedaled and became very quiet for they had finally learned to fear their constituents’ wrath. While this drama played out on the national scene, the diplomatic relations between the United States and Mexico collapsed when Mexico’s government refused to extradite to the US people wanted in connection with the La Raza Revolution.
Inspiration - current events, Harold Coyle's Trial by Fire, and Alexis Gilliand's Rosinante trilogy. What somewhat bothers me is Gilliand predicted in 2007 the creation of the North American Union when Canada and the US combined followed soon after by the forced addition of Mexico. This unnatural union lasted until the 2020s before Mexico split away violently after the assasinations of Governor Panablanco of Texas by cruise missile and Senator Gomez by plane crash.