Britain Has Invaded Nine Out Of Ten Countries, From France To United States

How Many Countries Has Britain Invaded?

Britain has invaded nearly 90% of the world's countries during its history, with only 22 out of 193 not on the receiving end of a bit of Great British aggression according to new research.

The findings are detailed in a book, "All the Countries We've Ever Invaded: And the Few We Never Got Round To", by history author, Stuart Laycock.

The Telegraph reports that Laycock examined each country in turn looking for evidence that Britain had ever established a military presence either through regular armed forces or pirates, privateers or armed explorers operating with government approval.

Many of the countries invaded never formed part of the British Empire

Laycock told the Telegraph: "I was absolutely staggered when I reached the total. I like to think I have a relatively good general knowledge. But there are places where it hadn't occurred to me that these things had ever happened. It shocked me.

"Other countries could write similar books – but they would be much shorter. I don't think anyone could match this, although the Americans had a later start and have been working hard on it in the twentieth century."

Although most people are aware of Britain's imperial past, the book's synopsis describes some more surprising and lesser known endeavours: "Not too many Britons know that we invaded Iran in the Second World War with the Soviets. You can be fairly sure a lot more Iranians do.

"Or what about the time we arrived with elephants to invade Ethiopia?

"Every summer, hordes of British tourists now occupy Corfu and the other Ionian islands. Find out how we first invaded them armed with cannon instead of camera and set up the United States of the Ionian Islands."

Some of the 22 countries that have escaped British ambitions include Andorra, Luxembourg and Vatican City, although Laycock is inviting people to revise the list if they can find any evidence.

Laycock said: "It is quite amazing and quite humbling, that this is all part of our history, but clearly there are parts of our history that we are less proud of.

"The book is not intended as any kind of moral judgment on our history or our empire. It is meant as a light-hearted bit of fun."

"All the Countries We've Ever Invaded: And the Few We Never Got Round To" is out now and available to buy here.


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