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History and common sense show that the leader of a country who chooses to start a war first and foremost must harbor grave doubts about his fitness to lead and also know that his failings are clear to the majority of his people. If an election looms, he must waste no time to prepare.
He is wise to choose a clearly weaker adversary, whose race, language, customs and religion are different than those of the aggressive nation. It is even better if the weaker nation embarrassed the aggressor country’s sense of invincibility quite some time ago, so that myths of evil about those people have had decades to take hold.
It will be a stroke of luck to find such a nation on the other side of the world. That way none of the leader’s people can properly empathize with the conditions in the target nation.
It is best if the soon-to-be hero/leader can marshal a lifetime of tuning out advice from experts. If his cabinet officials do speak, he must sack those voices and replace them with twisted souls whose résumé of hate dwarfs his own.
Lastly for the ground, if the leader’s sole logic for governing is to crush his predecessor’s accomplishment with the weaker nation, this war is destiny.
In the short term, fig leaves to promote justification in the eyes of the world for this intended violence are important. First, the leader must do all he can to incense the weaker nation’s government by thwarting its ability to provide for its people, with, say, tightening sanctions and trashing treaties with it. Then he should use a propagandized wing of his press to float narratives that those weak leaders are stupidly itching to die in the cause of kicking his blessed nation in the shins
Then he should respond as any wise aggressor would by sending overwhelming forces to the area in advance of any attack with orders to handle whatever might look like provocation for the safety of his allies and the world at large.
This sows the ground for an inciting incident. His twisted souls should now cite various unverified and murky signals of immanent attacks, being sure to withhold any details in order to protect the nation’s security. If need be, they should use an accident of an ally nearby this weak nation and hint it might have been the action of these murky people. Failing an accident that presents itself, pay this ally to create one using, say, empty ships colliding. The hero/leader will strengthen his case of being on the right side of God if he points out that there were no casualties.
He will need at least 40% support of people at home. Time-tested advice is to stir fear in them. Calling for withdrawal of his citizens from surrounding countries works well.
Now, tighten the noose. Define aggression from the weak nation as any action that takes place anywhere on Earth if it can possibly be linked to the weaker foe, never failing to note how disciplined and efficient their commitment to evil is. This is where the leader and his cabal begin to have fun. Working with their groomed media outlets, they feed each other creative causes to go to war.
To make his administration look reasonable in the face of violence, the leader should time his first attack on the target nation to be a patient three days after any incident small enough to be lost in history under the cloud of smoke from the conflict.
Extra credit: The leader should time the war to overshadow his domestic legal jeopardy brought about by his abrogating his country’s constitution.
Waging the war, he should proceed as leaders before him, making sure not to win too quickly. His own people will need time to adjust and take the bait of his selfless commitment to their national cause. His most clever writers should start drafting favorable history early to beat pundits to the punch. In military circles this aids job security, otherwise known as rinse and repeat.
Thomas Henry Pope © 2019