Well, of course I think too much about things and rainy days are the worst...so I've been thinking this morning.
Back in the early stages of the second half of the last century (which is a long winded way to say "the Sixties") the world was divided into two camps.
One camp wanted to rule the world and needed to bring down the United States, which was a more altruistic nation back then and kinda stood in the way of those evil people bent on world domination. We did things like counter attack the actual people who attacked us, conquer them militarily, and set them back up in business as a kinder gentler Nation with the admonishment to "Be nice, and play fair" like we did with the Nations of Japan and Germany after World War II.
The other camp was made up of Nations that actually thought the United States was the good guy because we wanted everyone to "Be nice and Play fair", and saved several of them from some really bad people. This camp was hoping that the U.S. would save them from the other camp, again if it became necessary.
There's always some other camp. Somebody somewhere always wants to take over the world, and usually not for any good reason that we know of. Usually they say "God told us to" but it's really because they just want to be rulers of the universe and don't stop to think about why that's a bad idea. There are two possible outcomes of war on these terms: you win, you lose. Both are bad for the future.
Ghengis Khan did a pretty good job of conquering what he considered to be the world, but then he fell off a horse while he was hunting and died. His empire got divided up amongst his sons and eventually collapsed into civil war between peasants and nomads for a few hundred years. The only good thing from his point of view is probably that he got all the women he wanted for a while. Today, one in every 200 mainland asians is descended from that old dog Ghengis. That's pretty serious work. Compare that to the one in every 130,000,000 Americans who are descended from me, and you see how much "work" he did.
Alexander also conquered the world and hit a major depression because he ran out of places to conquer, then he got sick and died. His empire immediately descended into chaos. What's worse...being gay, Alexander did not even want his pick of the women...What was he thinking?
Hitler might have actually conquered the world...He actually came pretty close. If he had, his empire would have collapsed anyway. He really had no sustainable economic plan to keep his factories running after they didn't need tanks and bombs anymore. Also, his "Super Race" of Aryans, that he was trying to grow, were not going to look like him, anyway. Hitler did not have blond hair and blue eyes, and was not going to be fathering the sons and daughters of the Fatherland anyway...He was way too kinky.
The reason I got to thinking all this was that way back when, there were people who wanted to destroy the good old USA...Those people in the other camp. Nuclear anhilation was a possibility, until some wiser heads got together and agreed that, due to the shape of the Earth, destroying one half of it would pretty much screw up the other half. Another way to wipe out a country had to be found, because other than a few Fundamental nut cases who think bringing on the Rature is a good idea...Most of us do not think destroying the world makes much sense.
What's a conquerer gonna do?
Well how about this? It will be kinda like the neutron bomb! It wipes out the life and leaves the houses still standing. Someone could just destroy the things that make a particular country a particular country, like say wiping out wine and cheese and baguettes and presto...No more France!
Of course in reality, France is quite safe, since without wine and cheese and bread, life on this planet probably wouldn't be worth living so maybe nobody will be that stupid.
But what about the good old USA?
What if someone wanted to eliminate the USA as a player on the world scene?
What if, say, someone could take over one of our political parties and then cheat in an election and get control of our government and screw up running the country so that our financial system might get overwhelmed by creating a huge national debt? While they were doing that they could mess up the environment by giving free reign to polluters letting them dump hundreds of thousands of tons of some poison into the air, like say mercury! These evil folks that could take over America could ruin our reputation at the same time by making up some lame excuse fo a war, firing every general that says, "Hey, wait a minute!" and then botching the war, killing a bunch of innocent civilians in a foreign country, while getting our Army bogged down in a quagmire and looking the other way while some of their troops torture a few hundred detainees, brutally killing a few, desroying our "Good Guy" image, while at the same time pointing out to formerly nomadic tribesmen that our military is not all that invincible, after all, because formerly nomadic tribesmen can now shoot down our helicopters with one of the rifles we left lying around when we blundered into the country and roared off to protect the oil pipelines and left the ammo warehouses unguarded so they could be pillaged just like the museums. The war could suck all the money out of the government that is usually used to do good things like take care of the elderly and save the environment and buy land for parks and schools and pay teachers and policemen and firemen and then, even if the evil conquerer couldn't wipe America off the map, the things that made America America would be gone and so, in fact, America would be gone also.
And what if the newspapers and the TV broadcasters forgot to mention all this, except on page four or late at night while instead they showed pictures of some weirdo who may or may not have done some strange things with teenaged boys, and pictures of girls who drive Indy race cars really well, and don't show the pictures of mutilated American soldiers trying to learn to use pieces of plastic attached to their bodies where their arms and legs used to be.
And what if....
Well, hey, it makes no sense to talk about any of this, now does it? Can't happen in America...Right, America?
Has the "Other Camp" won?