The United Nations' Global Defense Initiative (UNGDI or GDI most commonly, for short) is a fictional militarized branch of the United Nations which is featured prominently in the Tiberian series of Westwood Studios' Command & Conquer real-time strategy video game. A globalized and multinational military task force, colloquially known and referred to as GDI, the Global Defense Initiative originated from a secret military alliance between the most industrialized and advanced countries under the United Nations umbrella. Sanctioned to become the international community's collective response to the proliferation of the Tiberium substance and the influence of the Brotherhood of Nod society, the Global Defense Initiative was rendered the executive branch of the United Nations Security Council. Their official emblem became the motif of a diving bird of prey, set either against a silvery, golden or bluish background.
The Global Defense Initiative was originally a covert, multinational special forces group operating under the designation of "Special Operations Group Echo: Black Ops 9". The concept of the organization had first been proposed within the United Nations Security Council by representatives of Allied countries amidst the 20th century's Second Great War, and was in the aftermath of that conflict jointly established by unspecified numbers of the Council's members as a specialized, peace enforcing unit with a mandate to operate worldwide. The unit was outfitted with military as well as political means to render it able to silently hamstring anything from local ethnic unrest to regionalized armed conflicts across the globe, and was given as its prime objective the ensuring no fledgling confrontations would ever escalate into a continental or worldwide emergency again. As S.O.G.E.: B.O.9 repeatedly became deployed throughout the world over the many years however, rumors about their existence slowly began to seep into the mainstream public consciousness. Eventually, the overseeing Security Council came to the decision that transparency and limited disclosure were the best response to the international media's speculations on the nature and purpose of the secret unit. The final proverbial straw for this would come when an operation in which the attempted assassination upon Saddam Hussein, in a covert effort to prevent the outbreak of the Persian Gulf War, failed miserably and resulted in the death of a large number of agents. This incident, coupled with the rapid spread of a toxic and extraterrestrial substance known as Tiberium, as well as the ever increasing influence of the Brotherhood of Nod society, prompted the Security Council to begin to greatly expand and revise the mandate and purpose of S.O.G.E.: B.O.9. The organization was restructured and was brought out of the shadows, in order to make it capable of tackling the threats of the modern ages openly as well as directly. In accordance with the United Nations Global Defense Act (UNGDA), the United Nations' Global Defense Initiative (UNGDI) was founded at the date of October 12 th 1995. The proposal stated the following:
"The Global Defense Initiative was founded to enforce the United Nations Global Defense Act and uphold the ideals as outlined in the United Nations Charter."
During the First Tiberium War GDI fought Nod forces on a multitude of fronts. Eventually, Nod propaganda efforts painted the GDI as being responsible for atrocities such as the slaughter of the entire population of Bialystok in Poland through a series of false news programs by Greg Burdette, which forced the GDI to pull back from many territories which were then quickly taken over by Nod supporters. This culminated in the UN becoming forced to discontinue its public funding of the GDI due to fear of public rebuke. Nod began assaulting GDI strongholds everywhere, believing that the organization had been severely weakened by these manipulative efforts.
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Links: Wikipedia: GDI Answers.com: GDI Wipikpedia: GDI Storyline