It's a given fact that any Fan Fiction that we create will never be considered Canon - this is by definition the material contained in the TV series, movies and certain Paramount accepted books such as the Jeri Taylor novels. To give you a framework within which to visualise this time period this is a timeline of the main Canon events.
- 1992-96 - Eugenics Wars (World War III?) takeovers by genetically-engineered "supermen" led by Khan Noonian Singh. On their defeat, Khan and over 80 others escaped on board a stolen DY-100 sleeper ship.
- 2024—The Reunification of Ireland. ["The High Ground"]
- 2024--The Bell Riots, the most violent civil disturbance in American history, in San Francisco. They result in a new focus on social issues in the United States. ["Past Tense, Part I"]
- 2032--Birth of Zefram Cochrane [“Broken Bow” ENT]
- 2036--New United Nations declares that no Terran citizen can be made to answer for the crimes of his race or forebears. ["Encounter at Farpoint" TNG]
- 2043-2047--Mind Control Revolts against the use of drugs and behaviour implants. [“ST: The Motion Picture” a novel by Gene Roddenberry]
- 2053--A series of tactical nuclear conflicts around the world destabilizes the New United Nations on Earth. Begun by the infamous Colonel Green, they kill over 600 million people. Major cities are destroyed & governments disrupted. [""/"Encounter at Farpoint"/"A Matter of Time"/"ST: First Contact"/ST Chronology]
- 2063--Zefram Cochrane makes the Earth's first warp flight and is detected by a passing Vulcan survey craft, who divert course and make First Contact with the human race. ["ST: First Contact"]
- 2067--The Friendship One probe is launched from Earth. ["Friendship One"]
- 2067--The Terra Nova colonization expedition departs Earth. ["Terra Nova"]
- 2079--Earth is still recovering from its nuclear conflict in what is to become known as the Post Nuclear Horror. [ST Chronology; "Encounter at Farpoint"]
- 2103--Outposts on Mars develop into full colonies & soon afterward declare their independence. Continued trade with Earth builds the colonies. ["The 37s"/"Court-Martial"]
- 2111--Birth of Jonathan Archer. [Broken Bow]
- 2113--The New United Nations establishes itself as the Terran world government. ["ST: First Contact"]
- 2119--Zefram Cochrane dedicates the Warp 5 Complex and, soon afterward, disappears from Alpha Centauri at age 87. ["Metamorphosis"; "Broken Bow"]
- 2143--A.G. Robinson attempts to break the warp 2 barrier. The Vulcans counsel a slowdown in the program but Robinson, Archer and Tucker, steal the NX-Beta prototype and successfully reach warp 2.5. ["Unexpected" & "First Flight"]
- 2151--The starship Enterprise (NX-01) is launched.
Not much to build with! I have a start point and an end point and what happens in between must be a mixture of the few canon facts, extrapolation from other references and … my own ideas on the subject.
What, for example, do we know about the start of the period, the latter half of the 21st century? How complete was the devastation after WWIII? (Much of this I owe to a dialogue with Alex Rosenzweig on SFI-Writers)
In all likelihood, the 2053 nuclear exchange was more localised than global since a worldwide conflict would have made the flight of Cochranes' Phoenix from the ashes an impossibility. Global society would have been massively disrupted but not all nations would have degenerated into the almost medieval world of the Post Atomic Horror. Perhaps this is the "Eastern Alliance" mentioned by Picard in "First Contact"?
What do we know about the other end of the period, after the turn of the century, other than the occassional vague flashback on episodes of Enterprise? Our main source is the scene in 'First Contact' where Riker, Geordi & Deanna are trying to explain how important Cochranes' flight is ...
[originally published in Tricorder No9, Dec 2004 as part of "Star Trek - From Barbarism to Utopia"]
Riker: "It is a pivotal moment in human history. You make first contact with an alien race and after you do, everything begins to change."
LaForge: "Your theories on warp drive allow fleets of starships to be built and mankind to start exploring the galaxy."
Troi: "It unites humanity in a way no one thought possible when they realize they're not alone in the universe. Poverty, disease, war - they'll all be gone in 50 years."