“I will hunt down and kill the terrorists wherever they are — with my bare hands!”
The New American Justice Coalition (NAJC) is the final result of the Manhattan Project, a 1940s government initiative to discover a method of superhero creation so as to restore the original American Justice Coalition that existed at the time of the Founding Fathers. Since the first successful trial on President Harry S. Truman, every President of the United States has been endowed with superpowers and at least nominally become part of the New American Justice Coalition.
Because of the tendency for various members of the Coalition to be political rivals, the team of superheroes has always been only a loose association, with many of its members choosing to fight injustice either alone or in smaller sub-groups. When the entire team of living Presidents is assembled, however, they are Earth's mightiest team of heroes.
Current and Former Members
Harry S. Truman
The first President to successfully undergo treatment by the Manhattan Project, Truman gained the power to transform himself into living flame, which also gave him the power of flight. For the duration of his Presidency, Truman was the only official member of the nascent NAJC, so his most important mission — personally dropping the bomb on Hiroshima — was performed alone.
As the first of a new generation of American superheroes, Truman was a popular cultural figure, and he popularized the sayings, "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen." and "Flame On!" Truman remained an active member of the growing NAJC through the mid-1960s, but in later years his health compelled him to "pass the torch" as it were.
Dwight D. Eisenhower
The second President to be given superpowers by the Manhattan Project, Eisenhower gained the ability to emit laser-like beams of concussive force from his eyes. His superpower was not as powerful as those of the other NAJC members he served with, but traditionally he would lead the team during battle because of his prior experience as a military General.
John F. Kennedy
JFK was given powers not by the Manhattan Project, but by NASA, which launched Kennedy into low Earth orbit, where he was exposed to cosmic radiation. During Kennedy's Presidency NASA was given the task of being a second Manhattan Project — though the original was still in operation as well. NASA's Mercury Project enabled JFK to gain the ability to stretch his body any way he wished, while the Apollo Project researched not only a way to travel to the moon, but ways to travel between dimensions. NASA has lost most of the responsibilities assigned to it under Kennedy, but Kennedy's vision was surely instrumental in preventing our destruction at the hands of Galactus years later.
It was while Kennedy was President, during the Cuban Super-villain Crisis, that the NAJC first faced its arch-nemeses the Soviet Protection Comrades (see below). Kennedy's death also marked the last major mission by the original NAJC line-up. The newly inaugurated Johnson, with the two former members of the Coalition, tracked down Kennedy's killer, but with both Truman and Eisenhower growing older and declining in health, the future of the Coalition was to be with subsequent Presidents.
Lyndon B. Johnson
Johnson was granted super-human speed, a power similar to that of original AJC member, Thomas Jefferson. His first act as a member of the NAJC was to hunt down Lee Harvey Oswald and bring him to justice, and his last was to deafeat the mighty Galactus, being mortally wounded in the process. Throughout his terms Johnson also did battle with the Soviet Protection Comrades in places such as Vietnam. He is also seen as the link between the original line-up of the NAJC and the longer-lasting line-up that began to accumulate beginning with the Presidency of Richard Nixon.
Nixon was endowed with superpowers by the Manhattan Project's experimental gamma ray division. The treatment left Nixon completely normal except that when enraged he would transform into a giant green muscular "Hulk." While the power and uncontrollability of the Hulk inside him caused Nixon much anguish, it allowed him to perform one of his greatest accomplishments: forming a tentative relationship with China's Maoist Revolutionary League (MRL). The Chinese League of superpowered leaders had experienced an increasing rift between their former allies, the Soviet Protection Comrades, and Nixon took the opportunity to further the NAJC's relationship with the Chinese MRL. Nixon could do this without appearing to be weak because Chairman Mao knew that if he were to accidentally anger Nixon, then he would have to deal with the mindless and nearly unstoppable Hulk.
Nixon's inner Hulk would also be his undoing, however. Overcome with rage at his political opponents, Nixon transformed into the Hulk and savaged the operations of his Democratic opponents at the Watergate Hotel. Though the Committee to Re-Elect the President attempted to cover up the incident, it was eventually exposed by the superbeing known only as Deep Throat. After his ensuing impeachment, Nixon resigned from the Presidency, but remained a part of the New American Justice Coalition — in fact, by the end of his Presidency, Nixon was the Coalition's only living member. Nixon would live another twenty years, however, and would see the membership of the NAJC grow to fully six simultaneous members.
Following Ford's inauguration, but before the Manhattan Project could treat Ford, America was unexpectedly attacked by the Russians. Fortunately for the nation the attack awakened in Ford the knowledge that he was actually the Norse deity Thor, who had been sent to Earth to live as a human as a punishment from Odin. Ford discovered that his surrogate brother Loki, who had assumed the identity of Soviet Protection Comrade Leonid Brezhnev, was responsible for the Russian attack, and following the realization of his true identity, Ford retrieved his mighty hammer and repelled Loki's assault.
Carter was given superhuman healing abilities and his skeleton was fused with an Adamantium alloy, which also gave him retractable razor-sharp claws. Carter is a very peaceful man and thus only used his claws in combat once, during the Iran Hostage Crisis (see below). Carter primarily used the claws as a tool when building housing though various charity organizations.
Recently, as a result of the Secret Wars (see below), Carter lost his Adamantium, which has had great consequences for him. Without the resistance of the metal to keep his bestial immune system in check, Carter has started to slowly turn feral. It is tragically ironic that someone who has built so much habitat for humanity should be losing his own.
Reagan was given the ability to shoot "fireworks" from his hands: energy globules that obeyed his mental control and which could make anything from pretty lights to sparkles capable of blinding someone to powerful energy detonations. His most notable adventure was the Battle of the Berlin Wall (see below).
George H. W.Bush
The elder President Bush was given superhuman speed, strength and agility, and he was given a unique, unbreakable shield with the colors of the flag on them. Though he was defeated in his reelection bid by Bill Clinton, the two have recently become partners in their superheroism.
Clinton was granted the powers of a spider, including proportionate strength, a sixth sense, the ability to climb walls, and the ability to shoot a sticky webbing.
George W. Bush
A refugee time-traveller from the year 2060, President Rice-Bush comes from an alternate future in which Osama bin Laden gained access to the Secrets of the Atom and endowed himself with superpowers, slowly conquering the world. Rice-Bush travelled back in time to prevent this horrible future from ever occurring, but has found that the timestream is already different.
For instance, in Rice-Bush's history it was Howard Dean who won the Presidential Election of 2004, being endowed with the ability to use his scream to create powerful sonic waves which allowed him to fly, shatter objects with his voice and stun human beings with his yell. Rice-Bush is not certain if this deviation is large enough to prevent his horrible future and thus works tirelessly with the NAJC of this timeline to prevent it from ever occurring.
The various members of the New American Justice Coalition have had many adventures — enough to fill multiple regular monthly publications. These are some of their more famous exploits:
Following the American discovery of superpowers by the Manhattan Project, Soviet scientists, aided by information obtained though espionage, began to develop their own superpowers program. By 1949, the Soviets had succeeded in endowing General Secretary Joseph Stalin with super-powers. The rivalry between the two national possessors of superpower technology began to escalate, and many feared that the discovery might lead to mutual annihilation.
In October 1962 this Cold War threatened to turn hot. While conducting surveillance of the newly Communist Cuba, the Truman Torch spotted what appeared to be Soviet superhero technology being built on Cuba. Though the Russians at first denied the charge, further surveillance confirmed that the Soviet Protection Comrades were preparing a launching ground for a possible attack on the United States by Communist Superhumans. Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev defended the installation as being a legitimate defensive action against another Bay of Pigs and pointed to America's similar tactical site in Turkey.
Believing that the Soviets would not choose a full-out global Superhumans War, President Kennedy decided to stand firm. Using his stretchy superpowers, he formed a human barrier in the international waters around Cuba, creating a "quarantine" that would prevent Soviet ships from delivering the final components of the launching site.
In response, the Soviets offered two deals. On October 26, they offered to withdraw their Superhumans and launch site in return for a U.S. guarantee not to invade Cuba or support any invasion. The second deal was broadcast on public radio on October 27, calling for the removal of the U.S. site from Turkey in addition to the demands of the 26th. Kennedy responded by publicly accepting the first deal and sending Robert F. Kennedy to the Soviet embassy to accept in private the second deal that the U.S. superhero launch base in Turkey would be removed.
Iran Hostage Crisis
In 1979, the U.S.-back government in Iran, led by the Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, was toppled in the Iranian revolution. The Shah fled the country and in October of that year came to America to seek medical treatment. The move by America to admit Pahlavi infuriated Iranian leader Ayatollah Khomeini, and at his urging demonstrators surrounded the United States embassy in Iran, eventually taking those inside prisoner. As time wore on, it became clear that the hostage-taking was sanctioned by the Iranian government and that action must be taken.
President Carter immediately applied economic and diplomatic pressure, severing trade relations and freezing billions in Iranian assets. Carter attempted to enter into negotiations with Iran, but would not agree to their demands that the Shah be returned to Iran and that the U.S. foreswear any future involvement in Iran.
By April of 1980, wiith diplomacy making no progress, Carter approved a military rescue plan code-named Operation Eagle Claw. The mission resulted in failure, however, when the rescue aircraft were damaged in a sandstorm and had to turn back, after which one of the aircraft crashed, killing several servicemen and leaving mission materials for the Iranians to find.
By January of 1981, Carter was determined to try again. After Operation Eagle Claw had failed, Carter knew which claws he had to employ. Leading the NAJC into Tehran, he forced his way into the embassy and freed the hostages with the points of his claws.
Battle of the Berlin Wall
In 1987, after years of stalemates with the Soviet Protection Comrades, Ronald Reagan decided to further press the disintegrating Soviets and take the battle to them. He attempted to assemble a team to go to Berlin, but at that time the NAJC consisted of only four members, and Reagan had recently run against both Ford and Carter, so Reagan took only Nixon with him to do battle with the fearsome Mikhail Gorbachev.
In Berlin Reagan issued a challenge to the Soviet Comrade, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" In response, Gorbachev appeared atop the wall, his skin transformed into a metallic armor, and responded, "Why don't you make me, puny American?" There ensued an epic battle between Reagan, Nixon's Hulk, and the Soviet colossus. Though Gorbachev was strong, he could not stand up to the Americans; by the end of the battle the Berlin Wall had been destroyed and Nixon had beat the perestroika out of Gorbachev.
The Secret Wars
In the 1990s the New American Justice Coalition faced its greatest challenge ever, the Secret Wars. As a result of the Secret Wars Richard Nixon died, Ronald Reagan began to lose his memory and Jimmy Carter lost his Adamantium. Little is known of what actually happened during the Secret Wars because — as indicated by the name — they are secret; they also happened in another dimension.
The background of the Secret Wars begins in the 1960s with the launching of NASA's Project Apollo. Not only did the project aim to create a method of traveling to the moon, it also developed a method of traveling to other dimensions. The second goal remained a secret to all but a few, but unfortunately it was discovered by the Illuminati, who proceeded to infiltrate the project and perform their own experiments.
This influence went unnoticed until the Apollo 1 disaster, in which a test flight was blown up, killing its crew. As a result an investigation into the effectiveness of the money given to NASA was launched by several prominent Senators, including Walter Mondale. Mondale managed to discover the true cause of the accident, the Illuminati scientists had discovered a Bizarro universe synched to our own, and by creating a portal between the two they had caused similar events in our universe to occur in exactly the opposite fashion as in the other universe — our Apollo 1 blew up because theirs did not.
Mondale blackmailed the Illuminati scientists, preventing them from using their knowledge for evil. Mondale had his own plans for the device, however, and in 1984 he used it to assume the Presidency of a bizarro United States. With Mondale gone from our universe, the Illuminati resumed their nefarious plans, which by the 1990s resulted in a potential disaster which only the NAJC could handle — but we can't tell you what that disaster was, it's a secret.
Though the events of the Secret Wars are hazy, we know that somehow our heroes defeated evil and returned to our reality, though badly injured.
The War on Terra
Though Bill Clinton and George H. W. Bush began as political rivals, they were brought together by two water-related natural disasters and are now a regular sub-group of the NAJC. After the Pacific Tsunami struck, the two collaborated both by helping to raise money and by traveling to the effected areas to rescue victims.
The two reprised these role when the Gulf Coast Hurricanes hit, battling the forces of nature to prevent levees from breaching, and using their superpowers to expedite the evacuation of victims. In this second venture the duo encountered an unexpected ally, Al Gore. Though Gore attempted to avoid the spotlight during his work, the nation began to suspect the truth: before the first hint of a Florida recount, when it appeared that Gore had won the 2000 election, the Manhattan Project had moved quickly to give him the superhero treatment. Though Gore never became President and had tried to hide the Project's mistake in the interest of the country, he nevertheless retained his superpower, the ability to generate and control ice. When Katrina struck, he decided to join the two ex-Presidents in their rescue effort.
- American Justice Coalition
- Manhattan Project
- Apollo Project
- Soviet Protection Comrades
- Maoist Revolutionary League
- The Secret Wars
- Judge Dredd
- I am the Law & Order