Many of the augments saw the development of the Southern American Coalition into a powerful political body and the ongoing deterioration of former super powers like Russia and the USA as a window of opportunity. They tried to convince their superiors to form a multinational alliance with their infiltrated states, becoming a new Asian superpower. But Chinese politicians did not want to share any power with other states, even if controlled by China. They saw the fall of the Soviet Union and the European Union as a clear warning that supranational installations were too inflexible to counteract the rapidly changing requirements of international economy.
That is why Khan, Iqbal and a couple of other eugenic agents formed a secret alliance in 2044, planning to force China into war in order to gain more influence. The Russian minister of defence, Sergei Petrowitsch Gorbatko, also an augment operative and some sympathizers in higher ranking Chinese military positions started to stage border incidents at the Chinese-Russian border. Relations rapidly deteriorated between both nations.
In 2049, two Chinese frigates sunk a Russian cruiser. The Chinese claimed that the Russians had tried to board a Chinese transport. When Russia tried to introduce a UN-resolution condemning the attack China left the United Nations and mobilized its troops. Russia, counting on the help of the United States and European allies – and following the suggestions of Gorbatko – also mobilized.
On 2nd July 2049, Chinese bombers invaded Russian airspace and bombarded Russian military harbours along the Pacific coast – it marked the beginning of World War III. Unintended by Gorbatko, Russia did respond by launching a series of four ICBMs, carrying tactical nuclear warheads. They destroyed Dairen, Tsingtao, Chang-Chiang and Swatow, being the sites of military installations in China at the time. The augments urged for nuclear retaliation as they knew that the Russian nuclear forces were in a pretty bad shape. But the Chinese government, horrified and surprised about the drastic response by Russia, wanted to back off.
At this point, the augment agents seized control over their respective states almost simultaneously. Within two weeks they had gained absolute control over India, Pakistan, Algeria, Kazakhstan and Mexico. Loyal troops in Russia prevented Gorbatko’s Special Forces from seizing control over the Kremlin and Gorbatko became the first augment victim of the war when he was shot by agents of the Russian military intelligence GRU.
Colonel Phillip Green was a conservative member of the US Army, stationed in Osan Air Base in Southern Korea, when the war broke out. Being very nervous about the launched ICBMs from Russia, Northern Korea misinterpreted some troop movements in Southern Korea and launched its own two nuclear warheads against Southern Korea. When Colonel Green and his unit arrived at Busan, one of the struck cities, a few days later, he was confronted with hundreds of dying survivors. He ordered his unit to kill all in order to spare them the ongoing agony. When his unit was ordered to return to the US in order to fight against Mexico, they defected. Their real motives cannot be completely reconstructed. Officially, they infiltrated Asia in order to make sure that no one survived that had been affected by radiation poisoning, in order to “reject the impure”. It is more likely though, that they simply wanted to make money by plundering what the war had left. When the cease fire was declared in 2053, the unit was still behind the lines, quickly establishing a war-lord-like government in the district of Gansu.