Long before Krakoa, Cable built Providence, his own mutant nation. However, the X-Men weren’t exactly fans of the new country.
The idea behind the X-Men’s mutant homeland Krakoa is that it can be a paradise for the mutants of the world, an independent nation dedicated to protecting them and giving them the chance to actually grow as a people. But the modern Krakoa wasn’t actually the first time a mutant hero tried to create their own nation.
Starting in 2004’s Cable & Deadpool #7, by Fabian Nicieza and Patrick Zircher, Cable created Providence, an independent, mutant-friendly nation that could provide the leaders of Krakoa some valuable lessons.
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The island of Providence was constructed from the remains of Asteroid M and Avalon, which had been destroyed and crashed to Earth upon the arrival of Holocaust from the Age of Apocalypse reality. Years later, Cable had finally managed to contain the techno-organic virus in his body and turned his attention to using his impressive psionic powers to “saving the world.” Cable spent time traveling the world, saving lives, and generally making the world a better place. But one of his most impressive acts was to raise up the remains of Avalon and reform them into a new city-state within the South Pacific — coincidently, not terribly far from Krakoa’s current location.
Unlike Krakoa, which was designed as a mutant homeland above all else, Cable opened the doors of Providence to the entire world. The only requirement was to go through a series of tests to determine skills and psychological backgrounds, hoping to find people who wanted to help Cable change the world for the better. Within months, thousands of refugees, scientists, artists and thinkers had relocated to Providence. However, the amount of power and influence Cable exerted began to worry many global leaders, especially Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. Things were only exasperated when Cable made a proclamation to the world and ordered their help him in his mission or he would have all their weapons be dismantled.
This resulted in the governments of the world launching attacks on Cable, and heroic teams like the Fantastic Four and X-Men being sent after him. None of them were able to defeat Cable until the arrival of the Silver Surfer. The Power Cosmic proved too much for even Cable to stand against, eventually resulting in his defeat and widespread damage to Providence. But the island nation remained alive and vibrant for a time, with more and more refugees from around the world finding homes on the island. However, Providence wouldn’t survive much longer — with the X-Men forced to help Cable defend it from a new incarnation of the Marauders.
Sent by Mister Sinister to steal information about the upcoming birth of the “mutant savior” Hope, the X-Men were pushed to the limit to prevent the Marauders from escaping with that information, and the heroes were forced to evacuate the island before Cable set it to self-destruct. Doing so kept him ahead of the Marauders long enough for Cable to save the newborn Hope and eventually raise her himself, but also led to the end of his dream for Providence in 2007’s X-Men #200, by Mike Carey, Chris Bachalo and Humberto Ramos.
At its core, Providence is similar to Krakoa. The nation was all about changing the world for the better, and creating a place where anyone — regardless of their past — could feel safe. But without the backing of even most of the X-Men, there was no way to keep the rest of the world from turning their full attention against the mutant leader and his plans. It’s an important lesson that the X-Men hopefully took to heart when building Krakoa, as there are already nations across the world that have expressed distrust for this mutant nation as well — especially with how people like the modern Cable have been operating. Providence’s final fate should serve as a stark warning of what could come of Krakoa if the world fully turns against them, and the mutants don’t work together to protect it better.
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