Nobody likes to be called a dummy by a dummy.

Which country would be the hardest to invade?

The talk of WWII got me thinking... which country would be the hardest to invade in the world? During WWII I would say it was the USSR, but I bet it is the USA now. Any thoughts? For the sake of argument, pretend Nucular (GWB) weapons don't exist.

I'm from the US, so I'm biased, but considering how armed our general population is, and the fact that we are only neighbored on two sides would make it pretty damn hard.

In all honesty, I bet there are 2 or 3 countries in the world that simply couldn't be invaded even if ganged up on by the rest of the world.
Permalink Jared 
August 19th, 2005
Invade with what?

Military planners typically prepare to win yesterday's war, not tomorrow's.
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 19th, 2005
Invade with one person.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
August 19th, 2005
And with what intended outcome? Complete destruction? Extermination of the population? Subjugation of the population? To take ownership of assets? Or just to stir things up a bit? (I could "invade" the US all by myself if I wanted; it would be a pretty unsuccessful invasion, but I could probably cause some inconvenience for a short period. :)
Permalink Mat Hall 
August 19th, 2005
Invade by whom? For example, Mongolia would be pretty difficult to invade - unless you're either China or Russia.
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 19th, 2005
The USSR was a cinch to invade, and Russia still is - a massive border area, impossible to secure adequately.

Historically, the hardest country to invade at the time turned out to be Finland; the Winter War of 1940 was technically won by the USSR, but at a tremendous cost, and no occupation followed, just a minor land grab.

The US is fairly hard to invade because of the remoteness, but then that was never in the Cold War doctrine - the country was to be effectively disabled, turned into a radioactive wasteland and left to rot while the USSR played around in Europe. If you take nuclear weapons out of equation, it gets that much harder, but then you have to ask the question why anybody would want to invade it anyway - it doesn't have that many natural resources, and before WWII it wasn't much involved in European politics anyway.

Also, what do you mean by "invade"? As multiple successful invasions have shown, it is one thing to destroy a country's military strength and quite another to have control of it.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
Pointless argument. We DO have WMD. People don't invade each other anymore -- except in the third world, that is, and even that is considered a Really Bad Idea by the U.N.

You might want to ask, what country would be the easiest to purchase, so you could have your own country.
Permalink AllanL5 
August 19th, 2005
Easiest, or least expensive?

It's really easy to purchase the US government, for example, but expensive.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
August 19th, 2005
Is it actually possible to purchase a country, i.e. purchase a piece of land that no country has a claim to, declare yourself the absolute monarch (like in Britain, but without all those pesky conventions) and get recognized by the UN?
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
The US is incredibly easy.

You're thinking in WW2 terms, which are outdated. Things like funding extremeist pressure groups, politicians and terrorists have displaced the traditional invasion.

Check the population growth of Mexicans all over the West. By taking advantage of exploitive capitalist types and do-gooder immigrant advocates, many US states are becoming Mexican. I'll betcha 50 2005 dollars that the Southwest will be a Mexican province by 2050.
Permalink Duff 
August 19th, 2005
Duff -

Re. your point 1, that's why I said " Invade with one person." Because that's all it takes.

Re. point 2 - That would be silly. The Mexican government lacks the infrastructure.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
August 19th, 2005
The Southwest used to be a Mexican province until president Santa Ana (not to be confused with the guitarist Santana) sold it off to pay his debts.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
"Invade with one person" is called immigration.

And I'm sure there are some small islands somewhere, owned by a current government or group of people, who would be willing to sell for the right price.

It would probably be cheaper merely to buy the right to rule such a small group -- the title might be all you need. I thought the Japanese were trying to do this with Hawaii in the 1990's, in fact.
Permalink AllanL5 
August 19th, 2005
Immigration, or establishing a terrorist cell one person at a time?
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
August 19th, 2005
The right to rule does not in itself grant you the right of absolute monarchy. You could change the constitution, I guess, or revoke it - give the locals a hundred bucks to vote the right way in the referendum...
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
The US has already been successfully invaded:

The Mouse That Roared
http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0053084/

But my bet would be Switzerland. Rumor has it that all their bridges and tunnels can be destroyed within 20 minutes of an attack. Plus every home has a federally (Swiss federation, not US) mandated blast & NBC shelter. Plus every adult male citizen has their full-auto rifle at home.
Permalink example 
August 19th, 2005
So *that's* how they make that cheese.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
August 19th, 2005
Actually, on second thought, recognition by the UN makes you subject to all sorts of international legislation.

It's much better to own an atoll in the Pacific somewhere, not part of any country, not a country itself.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
Okay, it is officially impossible to ask a fun, stupid, offtopic question here in ?off anymore. Man, software engineers really have no sense of imagination or humor.

By invade, I mean fucking invade. Like what 99% of the population would think it would mean. March in, destroy the military and own the land, like the way it was done in the old days.

At this point, don't both answering. I thought it would be insteresting to hear "blah blah country because it is the only country completely surrounded by mountains", etc.

Oh well.
Permalink Jared 
August 19th, 2005
India.

The terrain there would be a bitch.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
August 19th, 2005
Rape the horses and ride off on the women!!!
Permalink muppet 
August 19th, 2005
I've seen Indian women. Kinda like Russian - no middle ground. Just hot or not.
Permalink Aaron F Stanton 
August 19th, 2005
"Man, software engineers really have no sense of imagination or humor."

I've been saying that since... well, since ?off was born, I suppose.

Oh and, if that's the answer you were looking for - Iceland. Remote enough that you can't amass enough forces for a single major strike, but compact enough for the shoreline to be defensibe, and because it's mostly vulcanic, not that much shoreline is actually suitable for an amphibious landing.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
"Rape the horses and ride off on the women!!!"

Sidebar.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
Thanks, much more interesting than.. "well I'm one person, blah blah"

Oh and, your right about indian women, much like russian women.
Permalink Jared 
August 19th, 2005
I'm so sorry, Jared, I think it was your topic which some people (myself) can't take in a funny way. I'm willing to speculate about off the wall topics, but my country is currently involved in a military action trying to 'liberate' Iraq. The Iraqi's are trying to decide if they want a revolution or a government. People are starving in Darfur and Niger.

I guess I took your question more as a "how would you like your cooked dead baby prepared?" kind of question. In other words, not something that is funny, not something that is worthy of speculation, not something that would lead to good answers.

"What country would be hardest to invade" opens all kinds of speculation -- military, political, religious, social.
Permalink AllanL5 
August 19th, 2005
I say Australia would be hard.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 19th, 2005
Indonesia
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
August 19th, 2005
"It's much better to own an atoll in the Pacific somewhere, not part of any country, not a country itself."

You mean like Pitcairn Island? They *thought* they were their own island until recently.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 19th, 2005
Would Australia be hard? I don't know much about their military strengths, but don't they have some pretty unihabited beaches that would be an easy landing point?
Permalink Jared 
August 19th, 2005
On the other hand, they have some pretty narly reefs that would totally fuck a ship's hull over.
Permalink Jared 
August 19th, 2005
Vietnam
Permalink  
August 19th, 2005
Yeah, I was thinking about that, couldn't recall the name though. Nasty stuff. But then, the administration did not actually own the island, IIRC they were elected representatives of the local population.

"I say Australia would be hard."

Too long a coastline, and except for the Great Barrier Reef it's mostly well-suited to an amphibous landing. The problem, of course, is that you have to march across the desert to get to the populated and inhabitable areas. But you can take over Perth for example fairly easily and use the railway eastwards. The big problem is that you can choose a random point within a hundred miles each way of a major coastal city, land there and approach by land.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
Australia, like Canada (I consider Australia our Southerly mirror), would be easy because you could subjugate a large percentage of the population by holding only a very small percentage of the land.
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
August 19th, 2005
Jared - Australia actually has a pretty powerful navy, essentially controlling the entire South Pacific all the way to the Solomon Islands. And their military strength has been proven beyond doubt in both World Wars.

They are also institutionally terrified of the asians, and so keep their army in good shape. In fact the only reason there is a town at the very center of the north shore is because in WWII, after Singapore fell, they expected a Japanese landing and built a rail line up there to move troops and equipment quickly to meet the invading forces.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
Dennis - yes, that's what Hitler thought when invading Russia. ;)
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
Oh I know they have a powerful navy, and they also buy a lot of "stuff" from us American's. I didn't mean to question their abilities. Truthfully a strong navy would only protect so much though. Once you get on land, all bets are off. Unless they want to shell their own land of course.

The U.S.A. has tons of land, but we tend to leave the middle of the country empty and spread to the borders/coasts. Plus I bet places like Texas have more civilian weapons than most countries (including our own) army.

Australia has a population density of 6.3 ppl per sq. mile, vs Europe's ave of 134 and Asia of 203. I think the Asia number is a little low, because Mongolia is put in that figure, and it only has a density of 4.3.

But pop density isn't all there is, I mean Monaco has a pop density of 43,000. But could be invaded before lunch.
Permalink Jared 
August 19th, 2005
"Unless they want to shell their own land of course."

I was under the impression that knocking eight bells out of each other was a beloved Australian passtime.
Permalink Flasher T 
August 19th, 2005
Australians like to fight and have guns. There are also lots of cities in all the good parts. The uninhabited areas are uninhabitable. They'd see anyone coming a long ways off too.

Iceland would be very very easy to take over. 99% of the population lives in a small, easily conquered area and they have no military experience and few weapons. Anyone could take over Iceland.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 19th, 2005
+1 for Vietnam
Permalink hoser 
August 19th, 2005
The US is looking much easier to invade:

http://www.nbc5.com/news/4868503/detail.html?z=dp&dpswid=1167317&dppid=65193

You could walk right up, guns blaring, and nobody would hear a thing.
Permalink Almost H. Anonymous 
August 19th, 2005
On the other hand, if you do encounter foreigners streaming across the border and try to stop them, you will be arrested, thrown in jail, and the invaders will be given your home and assets:

http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/19/national/19ranch.html
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 19th, 2005
Even if you give them water, a blanket, and cookies:

"The immigrants also said the group gave them cookies, water and a blanket and let them go after an hour or so."
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
I think there are a few people around here that could use a pistol-whipping and a cookie!
Permalink Almost H. Anonymous 
August 19th, 2005
Nice to be noticed.

I nominate New Zealand. The Maori were the only native population to fight the British to a standstill, teaching them about trench warfare in the process. Repeat matches are regularly held on the rugby field.
Permalink trollop 
August 19th, 2005
"ven if you give them water, a blanket, and cookies:"

yeah, its really sad how a bunch of jackasses who just wanted to spend a pleasant few days beating up on illegal immigrants got punished for doing so....*despite* their incredible generosity after the beating.

what *is* the world coming to.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 19th, 2005
The New Zealanders might be too busy with the bunny rabbits.

http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,3383139a11,00.html
Permalink Dennis Forbes 
August 19th, 2005
wow. just wow. why rabbits I wonder? ...hmm....
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 19th, 2005
"yeah, its really sad how a bunch of jackasses who just wanted to spend a pleasant few days beating up on illegal immigrants got punished for doing so..."

Read the article. No one was convicted of beating anyone (although it was alleged). What they were found guilty of was inducing post traumatic stress disorder.

The guy in prison was convicted of illegal possession of a fire arm.
Permalink Jim Rankin 
August 19th, 2005
"What they were found guilty of was inducing post traumatic stress disorder"

right, so the lesson here for the children is dont capture, hogtie , threaten with a weapon (and possibly beat) illegal immigrants in case you accidentally give them post traumatic stress disorder.

I can live with that.

I have to say though that the moral lessens these days are reaching a kind of absurdity I never expected to see.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 19th, 2005
Now that is a simply and obvious question to answer:

CANADA

Canada would be the easiest for the USA to invade, simply because if they did, we would simply assume Hollywood was making some large-scale WAR movie and we would be obsessed with where all the HOT Actors and Actresses were staying?
Permalink Move along, nothing to see hear. Move Along! 
August 20th, 2005
"We would simply assume Hollywood was making some large-scale WAR movie and we would be obsessed with where all the HOT Actors and Actresses were staying?"

Except, of course, there wouldn't be a single Canadian in the mix -- which is entirely impossible for a Hollywood production.
Permalink Almost H. Anonymous 
August 20th, 2005
"dont capture, hogtie , threaten with a weapon (and possibly beat) illegal immigrants"

And when did YOU stop beating your wife?

None of the things you mentioned happened - you're just defaming the victims to promote your own personal political agenda of open borders for drug pushers, child molesters, and AIDS infected Nazis.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 20th, 2005
http://www.ranchrescue.com/

This is the organization that is patrolling our southern ranches because the gutless moron Bush is unwilling to.

I just donated $500 to them through paypal and advise others who are against slavery and drugs to do so as well.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 20th, 2005
"None of the things you mentioned happened"


*something* happened:

"The immigrants said the ordeal, in which they feared that they would be killed by the men they thought were soldiers, had left them with post-traumatic stress."

"In April, Mr. Nethercott told an Arizona television station, "We're going to come out here and close the border with machine guns." But by the end of the month, he had started his prison sentence."

"The jury deadlocked on a charge of pistol-whipping but convicted Mr. Nethercott, who had previously served time in California for assault, of gun possession, "


" - you're just defaming the victims to promote your own personal political agenda of open borders for drug pushers, child molesters, and AIDS infected Nazis."

heh.

why are you in such denial over the actions of those men?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 20th, 2005
Actually, I think they handled it wrong. If it was my property, I would not have called people in to give them cookies and blankets. I would go out there myself, shoot every damn last criminal trespasser on my ranch, then call the sherriff to file a report and make arrangements for the bodies to be picked up.

Stupid to give them cookies and crap.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 20th, 2005
It's a well known principle that if you encounter someone breaking into your house, you shoot to kill. If you shoot to maim, the criminal will sue you.
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 20th, 2005
<shrug> so? you want to to make one grand gesture and go to jail? be my guest.

I still dont understand why you are pretending to yourself that these men are such victims of those cruel illegal immigrants?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 20th, 2005
The CRIMINAL trial did not convict him of doing anything at all to hurt the illegals. On the contrary, their own testimony showed that they were well treated.

The CIVIL trial was lost by default because the property owner was in jail for possessing a pistol on his own property. He had no chance to defend himself and the judge ordered a 800k settlement by default.

The guy did nothing wrong. Morris Dees, who is a fuckwit of the first order, got the criminals all riled up that they could get some $$$ from the guy and they did.

You think if I go to El Salvador and commit crimes and someone apprehends me and calls the police, that I will be able to sue them and take their house?
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 20th, 2005
my god you really do believe in this fantasy of yours dont you? a *clearly* innocent man done wrong by an arrogant justice system and robbed by criminals.

absolutely amazing.

how can communication exist where there is such a difference in our realities I wonder.

fucking kook.
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 20th, 2005
Irkutsk from Yakutsk.

Actually, Indonesia and the Australias from Siam was always a tough one.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 20th, 2005
You didn't answer my question.

If I go to El Salvador and commit crimes and someone apprehends me and calls the police, will I be able to sue them and take their house?
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 20th, 2005
"If I go to El Salvador and commit crimes and someone apprehends me and calls the police, will I be able to sue them and take their house?"

??? what does that have to do with the guilt or otherwise of the men in question?

did they live in El Salvador?
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 20th, 2005
As far as the man in question, he was not found guilty of even touching them, so that is resolved.

Answer the question. What are you afraid of anyway?
Permalink Rich Rogers 
August 20th, 2005
"Answer the question. What are you afraid of anyway?"

tell me why its relevant and Ill answer it.
(at the moment it feels like one of those stupid, rhetorical "its not fair" moans thats really doesn't require an answer....but if Im wrong about that, then explain its relevance and Ill answer it gladly :)
Permalink Jesus H Christ 
August 20th, 2005
Bhutan - the lack of roads would make modern war tricky - holding against the inevitable guerilla campaign would be hard.
Switzerland - mountains plus a militia which when mobilsed is several times the size of the British Army, motivated and well equipped.

and of course the nuclear powers - US, Russia, UK, France, China, and to lesser extents Israel, Pakistan, India and no doubt a few others.

Risking bits of your homeland being vapourised (aside from losing your army to tactical nukes) is only for the foolhardy. As disgusting as Mutually Assured Distruction is, its reality has contributed to the relative peace amongst the larger players on the international stage in the last 60 years.
Permalink a cynic writes... 
August 20th, 2005
The United States' military spending blows away every other country's by a wide margin.

http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/rankorder/2067rank.html

Okay, we're engaged in a war right now, but I believe it's been this way for years. The UK's military spending (also in the middle of a war right now) is 16 times that of Switzerland.

Switzerland has a theoretical 1.7 million possible manpower army. The UK has a theoretical limit of 16 million.
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 20th, 2005
The difference is that Switzerland's 1.7 million are already trained and armed whereas the vast majority of our lot would need to told not to look down the little hole at front of the rifle...plus they don't spend that much on their navy.

The way the Swiss system works is you get your call up at 18 do your basic training and then get sent on 50 weeks leave. If you want to do extra you can. When you get too old you go into the reserves. Getting out of it is not easy - althoug a friend mine did manage it but only because his German was so awful (he had dual UK/Swiss citizenship and had grown up in Simon's part of the world).
Permalink a cynic writes... 
August 20th, 2005
Easy, Switzerland.
Permalink Colm O'Connor 
August 20th, 2005
Australia? Aha ha ha ha ha... I'm guessing "invade" doesn't mean "hold the entire country".
Permalink Aristides 
August 20th, 2005
Two officers, a [non-Swiss] and a Swiss, are talking. The [non-Swiss] asks,

- "What would you do if my men invaded your country?"
- "I'd tell my men to shoot, and then we'd go home."
- "What if I invaded with twice as many men as you have?"
- "I'd tell my men to shoot twice, and then we'd go home."
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 20th, 2005
> the vast majority of our lot

Speaking of which, why *is* it that upper- and upper-middle-class men might expect to be trained as officers, whereas working-class men are trained as squaddies? Is that still true? What is it specifically about class or the education (or character) associated with class, that's the reason for this?
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 20th, 2005
> The United States' military spending blows away every other country's by a wide margin

According to that URL it's spending more dollars than the next 20 countries put together ... spending virtually as much as the rest of the world put together (excluding some countries like Russia which aren't listed).
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 20th, 2005
>> Speaking of which, why *is* it that upper- and upper-middle-class men might expect to be trained as officers, whereas working-class men are trained as squaddies? Is that still true? What is it specifically about class or the education (or character) associated with class, that's the reason for this? <<

That's been the tradition. The rich do the leading, and the poor do the dying.

The US military is an exception, as for the most part it's a meritocracy. To which I credit the NCO corps.

A good example of this is Colin Powell, who was born poor, but worked his way up to chair of the JCS, and now SecState.
Permalink example 
August 20th, 2005
> The US military is an exception, as for the most part it's a meritocracy. To which I credit the NCO corps.

One stereotype in my imagination is of fresh-from-school young lieutenant being paired with a veteran sargeant?
Permalink Christopher Wells 
August 20th, 2005
>> One stereotype in my imagination is of fresh-from-school young lieutenant being paired with a veteran sargeant? <<

Not a sterotype -- it actually happens. If the young Lt. doesn't listen to the senior NCO, their career will take a turn for the worse.

Some get past this vetting process. There was one Major at my base in Germany who forgot to put the word "exercise" on a message he sent to JCS. He got a call back from Washington asking if he really intended to report that Soviet paratroopers were landing at the airfield. After being chewed out, he went to the Comm Center and in turn chewed out the NCO that had transmitted the message (unaltered, as delivered to him, like he was supposed to do). I'd like to say that that shortened the Major's career, but it took another incident involving having the base commander end up face-down in the snow for that to happen.
Permalink example 
August 20th, 2005
I think the issue is whether you want the invasion to be successful or not.

"The USSR was a cinch to invade". Yes. It's such a cinch, dozens of groups have STARTED doing it over the years... many, many, many european bodies litter the retreat route back from the gates of Moscow.

Britain's quite a good answer; we haven't been invaded since the Glorious Revolution and even that was kind of "invasion by request".

These days, they've taken all the weapons off us, so the worst an opposing army would face is sarcasm. If you threaten to shoot Blair, you'd pretty much have everyone on side. I watched him speaking about 7 July and the only thing that struck me was the giant gulf between the Churchill he thinks he is and the actual Churchill..
Permalink Katie Lucas 
August 20th, 2005
Jared

You're a fucking moron. Let me guess you are from Montana right?
Permalink Dan Denman 
August 20th, 2005
>>Not a sterotype -- it actually happens. If the young Lt. doesn't listen to the senior NCO, their career will take a turn for the worse.

The RSM doesn't actually have to say "Rupert! Take your hands out of your pockets and stand up straight!", he just has to glare.
Permalink trollop 
August 20th, 2005
Re invading Australia, it's actually a lot harder than just landing on the beaches, because you have to get your troops and supplies across the sea.

If you came across the oceans, your supply lines would be 1,000s of kilometres long, and your ships would be sunk by either the Australian Navy or our good friends, the US Navy.

If you came from Indonesia, your supply lines would be only a few hundred kilometres long, but you would still be smashed on the seas. Australia owns the air and sea approaches.
Permalink Bogong 
August 20th, 2005
The other problem with invading Australia is that Australians are not a good bunch of people to pick a fight with.
Permalink Aristides 
August 20th, 2005
Antarctica is pretty hard to hold. Easy to repel just about anyone, assuming anyone find it of interest to hold at all (oil?).
Permalink Li-fan Chen 
August 21st, 2005
"because you have to get your troops and supplies across the sea."

Yes, nothing like the US invading Iraq...
Permalink MarkTAW 
August 21st, 2005

This topic was orginally posted to the off-topic forum of the
Joel on Software discussion board.

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