Forces must be configured to perform lightning-fast operations when called upon. The use of part-timers and reservists should be rejected in favor of full-time professionals and contractors wielding highly automated fighting machines. History shows that aggressors—for example the Nazis (in their invasion of Poland), the Japanese (in their invasion of the Malaya Peninsula, the Philippines and Indonesia), the Soviets (in their invasion of Afghanistan), the Argentineans (in their invasion of the Falkland Islands), and the Iraqis (in their invasion of Kuwait)—start aggressive wars because they believe their invasion can be completed before the Free World can react, and will thus be accepted as a fait accompli. Aggressors can only be disabused of such notions by the maintenance of rapid reaction forces and standing ultimatums.

This article is an extract from the book ‘Principles of Good Government’ by Matthew Bransgrove