The American Empire is a country in the anime and manga the Ghost in the Shell. It is featured prominently in Ghost in the Shell: S.A.C. 2nd GIG, the second season of the TV anime. The American Empire was one of three countries formed from the collapse of the United States in the early 21st century. It consists of the states that formed the Confederate States of America, and controls the states considered to be in the American South and Southwest.
After the losses suffered in World War III, the United States found itself fractured. The conservative party, along with the majority of the defense industry, took control of the Southern States. They formed Imperial America, or the American Empire, as it is often known. The Empire is predominantly right wing and carries an antagonistic relationship with the Russo-American Alliance. The American Empire has been demonstrating its authority as a military state since the last Great War. However, it started to suffer from a collapsed economy recently. Part of this is due to the reduction of Nuclear weapons as a deterrent now that almost every nation has them and with the Japanese Miracle, fallout is no longer a fear.
Although still a very important nation, America’s superpower status has been giving way to the economic behemoth of Japan in recent years. Currently, it is suffering from a faltering economy and a divided population. Class and racial lines have divided people into separate groups, each struggling against the others. Crime has risen to an all time high and the under funded government cannot keep enough police on the streets to do anything about it. The major corporations have stepped in somewhat offering privatization of law enforcement in some areas. As for foreign policy, the government is looking to do anything that will improve their status economically.
After the end of the nuclear World War III, the United States was divided into three countries: the American Empire, the Russo-American Alliance, and the United States of America. The American Empire adopted an imperialist government and in an attempt to regain world power, began deploying its soldiers in North and South America in an effort to secure new territory. Due to a battered post-war economy and weak political position, the American Empire entered into a security pact with Japan, which had escaped World War III largely unscathed. The pact reaffirms Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution in prohibiting Japan from both deploying its army overseas and possessing nuclear weapons. One of the major reasons the American Empire sought to enter into this treaty was the "Japanese Miracle", radiation scrubbers, which negate the effects of nuclear fallout. This makes nuclear weaponry somewhat less devastating in the Ghost in the Shell universe, since the radioactive material left over from an atomic blast can be safely dealt with—reducing its utility as a political tool.
In 2020, the American Empire capitalized on a chance to expand itself into South America by calling for the deployment of UN troops to the region under the pretext of overthrowing the corrupt governments of Mexico and other Latin American countries. Through carpet bombing, mechanized troops, and wartime atrocities, the combined UN/AE swept up guerilla fighters who challenged the American Empire's authority.
In 2024, a civil war broke out on the Korean Peninsula, and the American Empire called for troop deployment under the name of UN to stabilize fighting within the peninsula. In reality, the American Empire hoped to acquire the natural resources in Korea, and promised to donate a portion of the material to Japan if they deployed their army in a supportive role.
The American Empire does not have a lot of influence outside of the North and South American continents, and its relationship with the countries of Europe is largely unknown, although it may be safely assumed that the AE is on friendly terms with at least some of the European countries. The American Empire has very little influence in East Asia, although they do maintain sensitive listening satellites which can monitor all phone conversations throughout Japan. It is also never mentioned what influence, if any, the AE has over the Middle-East, Africa, and Australia.
During the second GIG it is implied that the Empire is in economic trouble with a diplomat arriving in Japan to negotiate economic aid.
The American Empire makes small appearances in Ghost in the Shell material, usually in a secondary role.
Stand Alone ComplexEdit
The first appearance of the American Empire in Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex came in episode 10, "A Perfect Day for a Jungle Cruise – Jungle Cruise", in which the American Empire dispatches two CIA officers to work with Section 9 in an effort to retrieve an ex-American Imperial Navy Petty Officer who has been murdering people in the city. The American Empire intends to cover up their war crimes by having Section 9 kill the murderer, but Section 9 fails to eliminate the killer. Later in the series, the American Empire allows Section 9 to access its highly sensitive reconnaissance satellites to listen in on all Japanese phone conversations in the hope that Dr. Imakurusu would turn up. The plan works, as the satellites locate the doctor prior to the Japanese DEA doing so, giving Section 9 an edge in the race to find the Laughing Man.
The American Empire plays a more prominent role in the second season of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex. Towards the end of the series, Gouda, the man in charge of the Japanese Cabinet Intelligence Service, attempts to have the American Empire launch a nuclear attack against Dejima Island to eliminate the refugees. This plan fails when Section 9’s Tachikoma tanks collide their AI satellite with the incoming warhead. Gouda then attempts to defect to the American Empire, but is executed before leaving Japan.
Shirow Masamune's AppleseedEdit
According to a world map published in the Appleseed Databook, the AE is (under the name Imperial Americana) still in existence during the milleu's 22nd-century timeframe, though (like much of the rest of the world at the time) in a heavily degraded state. Its borders seem to remain static between 2030 and 2147.