In 2108, an air strike over Washington DC rendered the United States' capitol into a war-zone.
Six months after this attack, the entire U.S. government fell as well, leaving the country without a formal leadership.
While on the brink of anarchy, it was decided that order needed to be found after a school full of children had been burned down in an arson attempt. It was then that the country was divided by the East and West: The chief of Watchers Bureau, Curan Wakeman, established the Western Order. Curan assumed the role as the first Chancellor of Western America. Although there had also been talk of conspiracy that the Wakemans were responsible for the fall of the U.S. government, so that they could assume power with the Western Order. As such, the west was dominated by laws created by the Watchers Bureau, while the east established a separate government called the Eastside Republic, or the ESR.
Unlike the Western Order, which is run by a single Chancellor, the ESR functions on a more democratic system. With a counsel and a series of laws that are voted on by the people, the ESR is more focused on allowing people to choose, whereas the Western Order seeks to control the people.
What lands remained were dominated by an organized crime syndicate, which rapidly grew in numbers. This became known as the Pacific Syndicate, due to their influence established over the Pacific Northwest. However, they have grown beyond that and have worldwide power.
Other lands remain uninhabitable due to the initial air strikes, and have become known as desolation zones.
This incident became known as "the Fall of the Old Government", or simply the Fall.
The schism that resulted in the country to become splintered was also known as the Divide.