How do you know when to move on from one act of ‘regime change’ to the next? Here there are two major criteria. One is the degree to which your actual mission is accomplished. If you attacked to kill certain people who had the effrontery to laugh at us or condemn us, to put in a government that will allow us to build a pipeline, to build bases and control oil wells, you can say that the mission is achieved when these things are effected. Mission accomplished and you can move on to the next.
Moving on will probably be sensible because your attack often causes intractable side-effects; a rise of internal violence, a rash of criminality, a boom in illegal activity such as opium production. It would be unfair to expect us to prepare for all these possibilities or to do all the mopping up. Yet your critics often go on about the chaos have brought, so it is good to give people something else to think about. So distract their attention by moving on to the next country on the list and people will soon forget your promises not to give up on them.
Fortunately attention spans are short, memories poor, the current war is enough to fill the media. So move the battle on and give a sense of success, movement forward, progress, a rolling, serious, concerted and planned brushing back of evil. No one likes stagnation. So God speed and keep the Crusades moving forward with further ‘successes’.
When you run out of people on the ‘A’ list, start to move on to a ‘B’ list, which are the reserves for attack, but which currently you deal with in a different way. You know that you are already starting to work on this. The second list are the countries you would like to undermine, weaken or perhaps crush because you know they will threaten your supremacy in the future, but you cannot do so as yet by conventional means. The most obvious on this list is China. So you need to continue to pour weapons into Taiwan, encourage Japan to break its post-war commitment to non-aggression, try to spin up negative stories about China, keep out as many Chinese as possible, build up the central Asian border states, send your spy planes over, try to use import tariffs to dampen down China’s exports.
All this will hopefully needle, undermine, threaten, destabilize China, as you did with the Soviet Union, but without actually attacking it militarily which would be futile and dangerous. Currently this approach applies mainly to China, but it might soon have to be what you do to India as well. And if Japan ever stopped being as subservient and accommodating to us, and asserted some independence, or switched loyalty from us to China, you would have to put it on the ‘B’ list.
Another point about the lists is that they help us to prioritise action. You work down a list. Just knowing they are on your list is useful in combating your enemies. It will cause fear, and perhaps defiance, which will further justify your attacks. So you pick them off one by one.
Then there is the question of who should decide on the list. Clearly this cannot be left to the United Nations. To start with, the ‘United’ suggests that that body would be averse to an approach that tries to destroy or re-model sovereign states on the basis of the self-interest of another sub-group of states. The most that organization ever comes up with is largely useless sanctions, even if they occasionally, as in South African apartheid, have some effect. Furthermore, some of the greatest ‘rogue states’ are members of the United Nations. Others have friends there. They would be unlikely to support their own destruction.
So the list making must be a matter for the leaders of the top ‘free’ countries – namely you. Of course if some other nations, for instance Pakistan or Vietnam, decided to make such a list and unilaterally attacked another neighbouring country that would be totally despicable and unacceptable. The exception, of course, is Israel, which has a special licence to invade its neighbours pre-emptively because of its beleaguered position and history.