The Race (also known as "Lizard" by humans) is an alien reptilian race that invade Earth in 1942 during World War II in the Harry Turtledove's series Worldwar. Their planet of origin is called Home, and their empire possesses two other nearby worlds.
They are a reptilian race, advanced for the human standard of the World War II era but with weapons and technology only partially superior to the human one of XXI century.
They have features that resemble the chameleons, including eyes that move independently. They have however a stubby tail and their height is same of an human child.
The Race doesn't use clothes, but the males and females feature a complicated system of hierarchical tattoos, to indicate the military rank or their civilian employment.
A significant difference from the human race it's the lack of family bonds: the Race experiences mating seasons and no familiar bonds are created between males and females.
Culture and behavior Edit
The society is highly organized and their culture is slow to accept changes and innovations. They are ruled by an Emperor that is perceived as a divine being. The Race has already conquered two worlds before attacking Earth; such invasions are motivated by strong ethnocentric beliefs.
Individuals of the Race have a rooted feeling of obedience, trust in the long-term planning and the belief in the right of the Race to expand its rule.
Individually, protagonists of the Race have shown a general contempt toward the human race and the Earth itself as planet (their home-world is desert, and the northern regions of Earth are considered too much cold and wet places), considering the human race (called by them Tosevits, or "Big Ugly") as uncivilized, dangerous, violent and disgusting being.
Captured Lizards show no sign of resistance toward their captures (if they receive a good treatment) and are prone to obey the orders at the point to reveal secrets and technologies.
Despite being ruthless soldiers in war, they've proved to be respectful of truces. Captured aliens in the hands of humans have proved to be able to interact amicably, even humorously, with the humans.
After the Cairo peace's agreements, humans and lizards often cohabited in a number of regions around the world: this led to further conflicts but also episodes of mutual understanding and even friendships among open-minded individuals.
The Race has been a stable empire for millennia. When their satellites observed Earth during the Middle Ages, an expedition was planned but the developments of the human race had upset all their plans of invasion.
Being a slow race, they were shocked to discover the humans in the middle of World War II, with dangerous weapons and studies to produce even more advanced ones (rockets, jets, nuclear bombs, etc.).
The Race quickly conquered Africa and South America, but the advance in North America, Europe and Asia was faced with strong resistance from the Axis Powers and the Allies: the human nations put aside their conflicts to make a united front against the invasion. The conflicts turned ever more bloody once both sides started to employ nuclear weapons: a number of historical cities of Earth were destroyed by nuclear attacks launched from both sides.
Finally a truce was established, leaving an uncertain future for both humans and the Race.
History after the Cairo Agreements Edit
The Colonization Fleet eventually reached the Earth, and colonists were reasonably surprised and shocked to find only a partially subjected planet. The Race was forced to face a number of difficulties: the independent human nations kept making technological progresses and begun their own space programs.
Meanwhile a number of violent riots and guerrilla wars were ignited in the countries of the Middle East and the Race was forced to face even Islamist suicide-bombers.
Another great challenge was caused by the effects of ginger. During the Invasion, it was discovered that such spice was a powerful drug for the Race. In the aftermath of the war, the Race was plagued by an extensive drug trafficking. Ginger became an even greater issue when it was found how could force females to go in heat, altering the reproductive cycle and causing countless of dangers to soldiers and colonists (due distractions caused by pheromones).
Relationship with human nationsEdit
Axis Powers Edit
Third Reich Edit
The Nazi Germany is part of the "Big Three": it's one of the most effective human military power able to counter the Race invasion. German military has be shown as the most effective force in dealing frontline battles with the aliens. The Third Reich has been able to destroy the first Race spaceship (with a long-range massive gun). Despite losing ground in Eastern Europe, Poland and France, the Germans managed to hold back the Race attempts to penetrate in the original German territory (both on France and Polish frontline). The German tanks have been the most effective in dealing with the Race tanks, even if with a negative kill-ratio. Jet fighters and long range rockets with use of lethal gas has made the Race pay an heavy toll for the war against Germany. Hitler himself has shown to be obsessive in the fight with the Race (especially after the destruction of Berlin), showing no restrain in nuking Rome (that has been turned the main Race operative base in Italy). Males of the Race have learned to fear and hate Otto Skorzeny because his covert operations caused heavy losses in lives and materials. The Third Reich has been a demanding partner during the Cairo negotiation, the stern request of returning Poland to the Reich has been a point of collision also with other Human nations. The Race has expressed the most stern repulsion and dislike toward the Nazi Germany, with bewilderment and inability to understand the Nazi political, social and moral claims in addition to disgust for the Nazi extermination of Jews.
Empire of Japan Edit
The Empire of Japan appears to have suffered an huge setback when the Race destroyed Tokyo. Japanese forces in China lost ground to the Race advance and most of them were forced to enter clandestinely or join the Chinese in guerrilla action. The Japanese nuclear program was wiped out with the destruction of Tokyo. Japanese are peculiar for their bad treatment of male prisoners: like the human POW, they're shown as disgraced enemies that had not committed an honorable suicide, thus they're subject of ill-treatment. Even if not part of the "Big Three", the Empire of Japan was allowed to be present in the Cairo negotiation as an observer.
Reign of Italy Edit
Already weakened by the WW2, the Reign of Italy quickly fall under the attack of the Race. Italy turned a major bridgehead for the Race operations in Europe. Benito Mussolini was at first captured by the Race, but freed by Otto Skorzeny raid. However the fascist leader chose the United States as place of exile. It's known that a guerrilla warfare was fought in Italy against the Race. However Italy suffered greatly from the former Axis allies, when the Germans decided to destroy Rome with a nuke detonation (to wipe out the large Race command center). Italy had no part in the Cairo negotiations, but Germany demanded the retreat of the Race from the country.
United States Edit
After the Third Reich, the United States made one of the most effective resistances against the Race. The aliens occupied the southern states and attempted to split the country in two. The US Army employed a number of different tactics in the war with the aliens: from trench-warfare (close Denver), to urban fighting (Chicago), to cavalry raids in the south. The United States suffered greatly not just because of the loss of a number of cities by nuke bombs (Washington, among the others), but also for inner displaced people and lack of food. However, vigorous counter-offensive alongside the use of nuclear weapons managed to prolong the fighting and halt the Race offensive until the Cairo negotiations. Captured males of the Race in United States see probably the best treatment: this has generated reports of fraternization between POWs and their guardians, with males that quickly learned American habits. The third leader of the invasion fleet (Strasha) chose the United States as country of exile for this reason, during his defection.
After the War, the Unites States was the most important country to show young ones (born after the war) to display interest for the Race: this led to a number of youth fashions and trends including using Race's words, keeping few clothes, shaving the heads and painting body tattoos.
United Kingdom Edit
The British Islands were at first ignored by the Race because they considered the United Kingdom as a minor threat due the small size of the country. This mistake was reverted by the Race with a disastrous attempt to air-lift a ground force into England. British forces managed to fully evict the invasion, causing one of the most humiliating defeat to the Race (even if the British army had to employ gases to break the aliens forces). Despite this victory, the United Kingdom as a whole suffered greatly from the invasion: having lost most of the colonies (with exception of Canada), the British Empire lost most of its possessions. Despite having employed modern weapons (as jet fighters), the lack of a nuclear program prevented the United Kingdom to be included among the "Big Three" (United States, Third Reich, USSR), even if they were invited as observer in Cairo negotiations. Male Race prisoners face a good treatment like in the United States. To the end of the war, the United Kingdom managed to get German help to start their own nuclear program.
After the war, the United Kingdom saw an increasing political alliance with the Nazi Germany: a growing anti-Semitic intolerance caused a number of British Jews to leave the country.
Soviet Union Edit
The Race advance in Soviet Unions was faced with energy by the Soviets, but with huge ground losses. The entire Soviet air force was almost wiped out from the skies, with the exception of the small but effective PO-2 biplanes that were used in many raids against the aliens. The Soviet Union was the first human country to use the nuclear bomb (built after materials captured), halting the alien advance toward Moscow. After this setback, the aliens engaged Soviets also in Estonia, where local Soviet partisan forces made a fragile alliance with the remains of the German army. The Soviet nuclear program made slow progress and the Race attempted a bold move invading eastern Siberia, hoping to cut the country in two. However, the Race suffered greatly because of the cold climate and the terrible conditions caused the first known armed mutiny in the Race history. When the garrison gave up the arms to the Soviets, the Soviet Union acquired items that were traded with the United States to help in the nuclear program. Stalin made calculating moves toward the end of the conflict, being fine with allowing the presence of the Race in Poland (close to the Soviet borders) as a buffer-state between Soviet Union and the Third Reich. The Soviet Union is second only to the Empire of Japan regarding the treatment of the prisoners: they have been shown to suffer heavy interrogators from NKVD and then are sent in gulags. The Race leadership is particularly adverse to the Soviet Union: it has been an utter shock and outrage, knowing that some decades earlier, the Soviets had killed their former emperor (the czar), the killing of an emperor was a concept abhorred by Atvar, leader of the Invasion.
Neutrals, collaborators and minor factions Edit
The Jews has been a controversial group among the humans. Facing the extermination under the Third Reich Nazism, at first the Jews in Poland saw the Race as liberators and saviors. A militia of Jews was organized to fight alongside the Race, and it was only later that the Polish Jews realized how the Race demands absolute control. The Polish Jews has employed a controversial conduct: officially allies with the Race, but often making obstructionism and creating accidents. Among the humans, the Third Reich exploited the Jews-Race alliance to stress the suppository evil nature of the Jews: because of needs for strategic alliance, the United States and the United Kingdom had to ignore the evidence shown by the Race an the Polish Jews about the Nazi extermination camps.
In Palestine, Jews were similarly close to collaborate with the Race, being eager to evict the British colonial presence in the country. Jews milita fought against the British during the Race conquer of Jerusalem.
Other nations Edit
In China, both the Koumingtang (nationalists) and the communists had led a guerrilla warfare against the Race. Such fight is strong both in countryside and in cities, employing also terrorist attacks (bombing) and killing of collaborators. Nationalists and communists (and remnants of Japanese forces) officially collaborate, but all the groups are eager to weak the rivals (often causing the Race to blame a rival group for an attack). The Race has been stern in negating the presence of Chinese in Cairo negotiations. Among the two main Chinese group, the communists has shown a more leading and effective role in fighting the Race thanks the direct support of Soviet Union.
During the war, Arabs remained quiet in the Middle-east. But after the Cairo Agreements, they expressed a growing desire to fight back: such riots turned in organized guerrilla especially after the futile attempts by the Race to introduce the cult of the Emperors. Arabs were supplied with weapons by other independent human nations. The Arab resistance however suffered a blow when the Shia leader Khomeini was captured.
Prominent pro-Race collaborationists are the Polish nationalists (even if there are other Polish guerrilla fighters that keep on the struggle). Collaborationists are mentioned also to be the Ukrainian nationalists. The Ustasha (croats) were believed to be collaborationists, but they secretly fight and collaborate with the Third Reich and were employed in covert operation led by Otto Skorzeny. Attempts to organize a black militia in the southern United States failed (with defections), but some of them engaged in battle the American Army. Partisan guerrilla movements have been mentioned in many countries of the world as in France (with sabotages). The Vatican has attempted a neutral policy, that was welcomed by the Race, but the nuke in Rome killed the Pope and destroyed the Vatican itself. In India has been employed passive resistance.