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Fifty-Three to One

The Oval Office, the grandest building of the country, is packed with important men and women. There is a distinct chatter: a facade of seriousness hiding great disarray and disillusionment. After much anticipation, the most important person in the room stands up, her eyes gleaming with a pen in her hand. She calls for silence in that room full of people. They stare intently as she begins her speech, pen still in hand, and perfect to finalize a decision.


It is the year 2030, and the United States has allocated its budget.

Oh Dear Lord, Congress!

These madmen have allocated a trillion dollars to the military, and now the president is left to decide what to do with it.

Shall she beckon a peacekeeping force, a military-led initiative to rebuild infrastructure in the country’s inner cities, or perhaps more aid for homeless veterans?

No, this money is kept snuck and sound for important things, you silly character.

Now let us fly a few thousand miles over. It’s sunny in Europe. Grand weather for Europe! More or less, this is also grand weather for the tiny land-locked nation of Liechtenstein.

The sun beams a wide smile, laying its gentle warmth over the lush green hills and antiquated buildings.

An aura of serenity is making its daily pass through cobblestone roads; this is nothing new for the tiny country of 30,000.

However, on this Sunday morning, the aura is met with fortitude.

There sings a large clash, a fiery thump, and the American national anthem.


“What the hell is this?!” cries a bald man named Müller in his local dialect of German. Before he could finish, he already had his answer.

The surrounding soldiers assigned to him number to 53 whereas he himself is nothing but 1.

Nevertheless, there is a brand of resilience in his eyes.

As convenient as it is to this story, he knows Karate!

A gallop of rage then permeates his very being, causing a thrust in his palms and feet.

One by one, and occasionally seven by one, he takes down the American soldiers. He is saved!


No, this not what happens.

In actuality, Müller is beaten down by the rim of their guns, and his home is broken into and ransacked.

Reality is harsh, crude and brutal. Back in the United States, multiple media magnates take notice of the developments and prepare their own guns for a media onslaught of the events. They decide to try their very best to sensationalize Müller and those like him.

All around the world, an outpouring of sympathy ensues; the planet sloganizes Müller and creates nice, easy-to-understand hash-tags for him.

Two days later, most of the world decides to forget about him and his countrymen. Nonetheless, it’s the thought that counts, right?


The UN Security Council is soon called to a meeting to discuss the human rights violations in the principality, and have conclusively come to the conclusion that she shouldn’t do anything at all.

The International Criminal Court, however, has other plans.

“The United States of America is hereby called to court for illegal trespassing of tranquil ground”, declares the judge of the ICC in a strangely overdramatic tone.

But, by this time, the U.S has already finished conquering Liechtenstein.

One question is now left to be answered: will she relinquish power?


“It’s only human nature!” begs the defendant.

Well, by golly, of course it’s human nature.

“We all do this in a show of power! It feeds our egos; it makes us feel better at the expense of other people’s pain. You may blame us for being led by our selfish ambitions, but humans have needed the ambition to survive. Be honest, fellow people, have you not felt a strange level of comfort in knowing that someone is jealous of what you have?”


The speech leaves people roused.

A further distinct chatter of emotionally-stricken diplomats fills the room; the judge eventually calls the room to order.

The judge admits that while it is a very keen and impressive observation of the flaws in human nature, it is a terrible and misdirected excuse for the invasion.

The U.S is declared guilty, but nothing really happens at all because you can’t really punish a country as powerful as her.

Reality is brutal, crude and harsh.


Another media onslaught is expected. It continues and then ends after two days.


Welcome to the modern world.


About The Author

Muhammad Shaafay Saqib

When I’m not overthinking, I spend my time trying my best to read more books, trying not to waste too much time, and figuring out what part of this campus I have not explored yet. I tend to have fun doing that, too, thankfully enough.