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This is a list of organizations within the world of the futuristic cyberpunk computer game Deus Ex.

National Secessionist Forces

The National Secessionist Forces (abbreviated NSF) was formed in 2031 as the Northwest Secessionist Forces. A year prior to the formation of the NSF, a major earthquake sunk most of Southern Californiamarker into the ocean. With the United Statesmarker government focusing on the disaster on the ex-West Coast, the needs of the other parts of the country went unmet. In 2031, Utahmarker announced its intention to secede from the United States, declaring its independence and annexing what was left of Arizonamarker and Nevadamarker. Inspired by Utah's example, fringe groups in Texasmarker declared independence as well. Shortly afterwards, various paramilitary groups in Washingtonmarker, Oregonmarker, Idahomarker, Montanamarker and Wyomingmarker formed the NSF. All of these attempts to secede failed, though martial law continues to exist in some portions of these states.

In 2042, new gun control legislation in the form of the Sporting Weapons Act was passed, and the NSF appeared again as the National Secessionist Forces. The new NSF was composed of individuals who refused to give up their rifles, grenades, land mines, and other "collectibles" prohibited by the Act. Led by Leon Woods, the goal of the NSF was to violently overthrow the U.S. government and restore the right of the nation's citizens to bear arms. Originally based mainly in the Western United States, the movement spread eastward, eventually creating a large support base in major eastern urban centers such as New York Citymarker. While the United Nations and the U.S. government classified the NSF as a terrorist group, many people saw the NSF as liberators from an increasingly authoritarian U.S. central government. Leon Woods was killed at his infamous last stand in 2045 at Squalnomie Square, but the NSF continued on gaining more and more strength, as well as support from Silhouette (the resistance movement against the French government), the Luminous Path Triad (a mafia group in Hong Kong), and X-51 (a group of former Area 51marker scientists). Dissident computer scientists and programmers, said to be based in Seattle and San Francisco, aided the NSF in setting up a highly encrypted communication network; eroding the edge that MJ-12 and UNATCO had due to their control over the Aquinas network and ECHELON. At this point, the United Nations declared war on the NSF.

In the year when Deus Ex takes place (2052), the NSF discovers that the United Nations and the U.S. government are deliberately restricting poor people from accessing Ambrosia (the vaccine for the disease known as the Gray Death), and are under the control of a secret organization called Majestic 12 that is intent on gaining absolute control over everything in the world. To give the lower class the same chance to survive as the upper class and employees of the U.S. government, they steal Ambrosia vaccines and send them to Luminous Path Triad scientist Tracer Tong to be synthesized, making the NSF popular with the lower classes. The state of Texas, which unsuccessfully tried to secede in 2032, is described in an email as being in a state of constant warfare between the NSF and UNATCO and the U.S. military.

In an attempt to reduce support for the NSF, UNATCO framed the NSF and their allies for many terrorist acts, including the bombings of the Statue of Libertymarker, as well as smuggling illegal drugs and immigrants (although the Luminous Path Triad, being a mafia group, is involved in such smuggling activities). When the NSF started running out of troops during their assault in New York City , however, they began to desperately take hostages in hopes that UNATCO would surrender, despite a policy discouraging hostage-taking.

After the events of Deus Ex, most of the organization seems to be crippled but not destroyed. This is partly due to the actions of the player, whose short tenure with UNATCO saw the capture of several important bases—including the NSF New York headquarters; capture or death of several commanders, including a prominent NSF leader and financial backer, Juan Ivanovich Lebedev, and the failure of a critical operation in New York Citymarker.

However, the organization remains largely intact—though with a reduced strength in the East Coast. This is probably due to the sending of the NSF distress signal by JC at the New York headquarters in Hell's Kitchenmarker which allowed other NSF bases and resistance groups in Europe to take necessary counter measures. Several prominent members from the New York Section remain at large, probably waiting to reform the organization in New York; indeed, this is evidenced by the fleeing of NSF commanders Decker Parkes, Erin Todd and Wayne Young to Europe. During the game, the NSF are conducting operations in Paris under the command of Chad Dumier, leader of Silhouette and the Illuminatus Morgan Everett. Morgan Everett, in conversation with JC, mentions their still-operational HQ as being a few hundred miles north of the X-51 base at Vandenberg. In Paris, JC Denton overhears a man asking his wife to come with him to America as he has been contracted to work with the NSF.

UNATCO

Although it seems that UNATCO (United Nations Anti-Terrorist Coalition) was formed as an ad hoc response by UN member nations to the growing problem of international terrorism , JC Denton discovers that they are actually the police force of the secret organization called Majestic 12. Although it is implied that UNATCO was formed in the early 21st century, the exact date of the genesis of UNATCO is unclear. Several of the game's characters have worked for the organization for many years, including Joseph Manderley, Sam Carter, Paul Denton, and Gunther Hermann. The game's protagonist, 23 years old in the game, also mentions adolescent dreams of working for the organization.

A few years prior to the events in Deus Ex, UNATCO, through collaboration with groups like INTERPOLmarker and with funding by the United States, became known as a standing international counterterrorist police force; the term "world police" is used to describe the organization. By the game year, 2052, UNATCO has formed its headquarters on Liberty Islandmarker in New York Citymarker after a terrorist strike on the Statue of Libertymarker.. Ironically, JC Denton discovers that UNATCO were the true perpetrators of the Statue of Libertymarker bombing, which was staged to reduce support for the NSF and its allies.

The player uncovers financial links that bind UNATCO to Walton Simons, head of the FEMA and a key leader of Majestic-12. UNATCO does much of MJ-12's dirty work, including the dispersal of biological warfare agents against the general population, and military suppression of any peaceful or military resistance to UNATCO member governments.

With the onslaught of the global collapse perpetrated by JC Denton at the end of Deus Ex, UNATCO, along with most other global entities, is portrayed in the game's sequel, Deus Ex: Invisible War, as having effectively ceased to exist. The old Liberty Island UNATCO base makes a cameo appearance at the end of Invisible War as it is used by JC Denton to store the dormant Aquinas protocol, though by the year 2072 when the game is said to take place, the complex is effectively a ruin, and many homeless people live there.

When Deus Ex was released in 2000 Ion Storm created a website (www.unatco.org) for the fictional organization to promote the game. Ion Storm pulled the website shortly after the September 11, 2001 attacks.

The motto of UNATCO is from the Sententiae of Publilius Syrus: "Nihil aliud scit necessitas quam vincere", which means, "Necessity knows nothing else but victory."

The Illuminati

The Illuminati have controlled the world "behind the scenes" for centuries, carefully managing the world's economies and governments in their quest for complete global control. By the time Deus Ex takes place, however, they have been usurped from their position of power by ex-protégé Bob Page and his splinter group "Majestic 12".

Knights Templar

In Deus Ex, The Knights Templar are the descendants of the medieval order of the Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon. By the time Deus Ex takes place, however, the Templars have been destroyed by a combined Interpol/UNATCO force headed by Joseph Manderley.

Majestic 12

Majestic 12 (also known as MJ-12, MJ12, Those Who Rule the World in Majesty and officially as The Majestic Council of the Twelve) is a splinter organization of the Illuminati, and lead by the former Illuminati member, Bob Page. While the Illuminati prefers to control by assimilating persons of intellect into a grand conspiracy, Majestic 12 plans to control the world in secret through the production of the "Gray Death nanovirus" and the virus's vaccine, Ambrosia. The organization's public fronts include Page Industries, which controls the global banking system and is run by Bob Page, VersaLife, a division of Page Industries, and UNATCO.

The virus is then spread to the public, and then UNATCO and FEMA are used to control the supply of the vaccine. It is provided in limited quantities, and the list of people to be vaccinated is limited to employees and conspirators of MJ12, as well as employees of MJ12 fronts, and to those for whom politicians request it, so long as they co-operate with MJ12.

Majestic 12 also uses complex information-processing systems, including artificial intelligence, at least two systems of which are prominent elements in the game's story, these being Daedalus and Icarus. Daedalus and Icarus are the results of previous efforts of the Illuminati to create an omnipresent surveillance tool to not only monitor, but evaluate world events and even individual lives. Before the events in the game, Page initiated the Aquinas Protocol, allowing MJ-12 to monitor and selectively censor all global communications.

Apart from use of the Gray Death/Ambrosia manipulation, sophisticated military technologies and advanced surveillance networks, MJ-12 is also not averse to using divide and conquer methods, weakening their enemies and turning them against one another. The organization also holds no apparent qualms about using other types of psychological tactics as they wage war on the world's government. One example of this is the exploitation of the bizarre traits of MiBs to intimidate or unnerve dissidents and coerce them in to submission, and to deter would-be assassins or spies when serving as bodyguards and security forces.

Majestic 12 HQ is based in Area 51marker but has bases including but not limited to submerged Ocean Labs, concealed bases in UNATCO headquarters, bases in the sewage system beneath New Yorkmarker and Versalife Headquarters.

Majestic 12 military personnel bear the insignia XII, which is twelve in Roman numerals. Other symbols used include a hand menacing a globe; this is displayed in actual form in Majestic Twelve's facilities, including the restricted labs at VersaLife's Hong Kong building, as a kind of centrepoint. The symbol also appears on MJ-12 computer terminals, in this instance the globe being the azimuthal equidistant projection used by the UN flag, under the shadow of a translucent hand. The symbol can therefore be interpreted in either of two ways; as a display of MJ-12's actual covert control of the UN and associated agencies, such as UNATCO, or as an aspiration to the complete world domination which the group strives towards and very nearly acquires.

It is hinted, though never explicitly confirmed, that MJ12 had been a government agency under the control of Lucius DeBeers' Illuminati all through the 20th century. The motto of Majestic 12 is: "IPSA SCIENTIA POTESTAS EST"—Latin for "Knowledge Itself Is Power."

Page Industries

Page Industries is a huge multinational corporation. It is owned by Bob Page, and is involved in several industries including robotics manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, construction, computer hardware and software manufacturing and defense. Assumed to have disintegrated by the time of Invisible War.

Rooks

The Rooks are a gang that live in a hidden and abandoned sector of subway in Battery Park, along with civilians unaffiliated to them called the Mole People. They are led by a man named El Rey and hold power that is opposed by few. The only threatening adversary that they have in the subway is a zyme dealer named Rock. Some members of the gang mention that they are considering being hired by the NSF as special forces. Some may have already taken the offer, as men in the same uniform as Rooks are seen on Liberty Islandmarker (called 'mercenary thugs'), and a few are also seen in Hell's Kitchen (called 'NSF thugs').

VersaLife

A subsidiary of Page Industries, VersaLife is itself a commercial behemoth. It specialises in nanotechnology, making several products which use nanites, from nanoaugmentations, to nanotech swords, to the nanite-composed vaccine for the Gray Death. In secret, and in accordance with Majestic 12's plans for world domination, it also produces the fatal Gray Death virus. As the source of both the virus and the only working vaccine, anyone susceptible to the virus is effectively at Majestic 12's mercy.

VersaLife may operate as a pharmaceutical company, but specializes in established and theoretical applications of nanotechnology, especially in conjunction with living creatures. It also experiments with synthetic creatures, known as transgenics, and—with the aid of nanotechnology—genetically engineers organisms, presumably as a result of experimentation, or for use in experiments, or possibly both or neither. Some of these include: Greasel, Grays, and Karkians. In addition to these creatures, Bob Page claims that VersaLife created the protagonist, JC Denton, and his "brother," Paul Denton.

Silhouette

Silhouette is the resistance movement against the French government, led by Chad Dumier (who is known to the public as "The Minister of True Lies"). They have discovered that the United Nations and the French government are deliberately restricting poor people from accessing Ambrosia (the vaccine for the Gray Death disease), and are under the control of a secret organization called Majestic 12 that wants absolute control over everything in the world. They are allied with the NSF (the resistance movement against the United Statesmarker government), the Luminous Path Triad (a mafia group in Hong Kong), and X-51 (a group of former Area 51marker scientists). They focus their efforts on subversion of media outlets to attract citizens to their cause. Their motto is "Tandis qu'ils dorment, nous gagnerons" (While they sleep, we will win). The philosophy and approach of Silhouette is similar to the real-life French Situationists. By the game year (2052), Silhouette suffered a leak that led to the exposure of one source of their funding, the wealthy French heiress and banker Beth DuClare. After a brief but torrid scandal, she was assassinated by Majestic 12.

Also during that year, an attack on the Statue of Libertymarker was the most-cited reason for the establishment of a standing UNATCO force on American soil. Many throughout the world suspected Silhouette, which had several months before released statements on world cultural monuments, among them a claim that the Statue ought not have been given to America. However, it is discovered that UNATCO had perpetrated the bombings to reduce support for Silhouette and its allies.

Through their leader's close relationship with Nicolette DuClare, Silhouette benefit from the financial, social and intelligence support of the French faction of the Illuminati. Dumier claims that he doubts the Illuminati would continue to assist Silhouette were MJ-12 not a threat, but the younger DuClare sympathizes more with Silhouette. The Illuminati find Silhouette to be useful allies in their struggle with MJ-12.

X-51

The X-51 logo
The X-51 Vandenberg Base.
As described in game, X-51 is a group of scientists, technicians and ex-United States army soldiers, led by Dr. Gary Savage, who defected from Area 51marker in 2051 after learning about the shadowy intentions of Majestic 12, the secret organization led by the game's main antagonist, Bob Page.

When they walked out they stole “everything smaller than a paper clip” according to X-51 member and scientist Carla Brown, and C-4'ed the large pieces of machinery at Area 51 that would make up the Universal Constructor needed for MJ-12's nefarious plans.

After their defection, they are said to have eluded UNATCO and the U.S. Army by posing as a research consortium and purchased Vandenberg Air Force Basemarker, which had fallen into disrepair as a result of a catastrophic seismic upheaval mentioned in the game's back-story only as the "SoCal Earthquake". They have had contact with the NSF, the Illuminati and other resistance movements, however they are not coordinating fully with any organization. Despite this, they are portrayed as well armed and their Vandenberg base as heavily fortified.

They are the only institution excluding MJ-12 who are said to possess a "Universal Constructor", a device with which they hope to find a cure for the plague known as the "Grey Death", a pandemic which has spread across the planet within the game.

References

  1. Wendi White ( in Righteous Angels: Perspectives on UNATCO ): As the giddiness that greeted the new millennium faded to grim apathy in the face of the plague, famine, and the inevitable waves of national convulsions that followed in their wake, the United Nations found itself increasingly outmoded and unable to cope with the worldwide rise in terrorism (Deus Ex) Austin: Ion Storm, 2000
  2. UNATCO Handbook: UNATCO and the World : For far too long terrorists have exploited international tensions and regional legislative variations to elude authorities. A significant step was made towards eliminating these legal loopholes when U.S. President Philip Riley Mead lobbied the Congress to make the U.S. a UNATCO member nation: "Enough is enough!" he declared in his landmark State of the Union address, and the citizens of the United States responded with enthusiastic endorsement of his position. Not only did the United States become a charter member of UNATCO, but UNATCO headquarters are now located on Liberty Island in the shadow of that shattered monument to FREEDOM. UNATCO deals not only with terrorist threats, but also any transgressions of the international legal code, including drug trafficking, software piracy, and money laundering. With the full support of the United States, UNATCO was for the first time able to truly declare itself the "WORLD'S POLICEMAN." (Deus Ex) Austin: Ion Storm, 2000
  3. UNATCO Handbook: Dedication : Nihil aliud scit necessitas quam vincere. --Syrus (Deus Ex) Austin: Ion Storm, 2000



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