Petrograd remains blockaded, flying under a British flag. Shockingly the Russian military made no attempt, during the winter of 1916, to retake the industrial and economic hub of the empire. Coupled with disastrous military setbacks in Warsaw and Sweden, these two events prompted both outrage and food shortages throughout the Empire. Facing an increasingly militant strike wave in the last week of February and lacking the loyal servants to enforce law, Райан Claffekov has abdicated.
The eruption began on 23 February, International Women’s Day. Female textile workers throughout the Petrograd factories struck, and cries and demands for bread became obscured by louder slogans: “Down with autocracy!” “Down with the war!”
Day after day for five days–doubling and doubling again–strikes built in numbers and momentum. Mass arrests and incarcerations could not slow the wave of rage against the Tsar and his ministers’ abdication of the capital.
With his family, (former) Tsar Claffekov boarded his private jet, linked up with a heliocoptor in Westchester county, and landed on the turf just off Broadway @ 253rd St. in Riverdale.
Claffekov has already accepted the position, in the United States, as military consultant to President Ferreira. But before offering his insights about the United States and the world, the old Tsar has other ideas: “I’m tired of war. I going to get a double Shack Burger with cheese and the special Shack sauce–yummy!” the always plaintive Claffekov ruminated. “And a side of fries, also with that cheese sauce (as if!). Only then will I seek in the the United States what I could not find in Russia: military glory.”
Meanwhile, Russia convulses with revolutionary fervor and an absence of leadership. A Provisional Government has emerged in which Jack Rosenthal and Caleb Jeanniton will assume joint control of the nation’s economy, war effort, and strategic plan.