Exercise Robin Sage is a month-long training exercise focused on blending in in a foreign land and training guerrilla units to liberate their country. Seems pretty tame so far, but surprisingly, not many countries are really down with the whole “let a hundred American troops run around and stir up rebellion in our country for a month” idea. So America decided to simply create its own country to train in. Welcome to the Republic of Pineland, baby!
The People’s Republic of Pineland is an entirely fictional country created for one purpose: to put the USASF through their paces. And when we say it’s a fictional “country,” we’re including the people – the residents are straight up part of the mission. The cities and towns within the 15 counties that comprise the training zone actively participate in the month-long training, with its citizens posing as citizens of “Pineland” in a vast, government-funded, open-air role playing game.
People there take on a large variety of roles, from doctors and shop owners right down to one guy who has to torture other citizens before being killed in a final showdown with the soldiers. They even carry two sets of ID and have their own currency, with an exchange rate and everything. They don’t stop their normal jobs, either – the guy whose job it is to pretend to be a torturer is also a volunteer firefighter in his spare time.