Saturday, April 5, 2014

Book Review: All the Countries We've Ever Invaded

All the Countries We've Ever Invaded.

...and a Few We Didn't Get Round To.
Stuart Laycock.

This is the first of two books I bought at Heathrow, when last passing through. The We in the title refers to the British, hence buying it in the UK, however, the title of the book remains unchanged for the North American release of the book.

For the purposes of this book, invaded also includes disputes and incursions in the territorial waters of a country, pirate/privateer activity, as well as the incursion of armed explorers, as long as they working under the approval of the government.

For a brief resume of the countries we have not invaded (obviously the shorter list) there were a couple of newspaper articles that appeared when the book was released. This one in the Telegraph has a handy map, and a list at the bottom.

Clearly, though, as wargamers, we're much more interested in the ones we did invade, and that's where this book comes into its own. Every country in the world is listed, and under each entry a quick run down of how the British (or English, if pre-union) army has been involved there. This obvioulsy includes a great deal of our Colonial past, as well as giving a more rounded apprecition of the many theatres of opperation during the two world wars.

The book is also a wealth of little gems that, when researched a little, should give wonderful historical gaming scenarios. For example, that time in Vietnam, after the war, where British and Indian Troops, and an attached Japanese Batallion, took on the communist Viet Minh forces. Or that other time, when Royalists and Parliamentarians duked it out in the Carribean (Barbados stayed loyal to the Crown, so Cromwell sent an invasion force). The book is full of such little tid-bits.

The book is laid out as an alphabetical list by country, and therefore is easy to pick up and put down whilst reading. It also means that it works as a reference book (there is also a full index).

Sound like your kind of thing? Go look it up. I think it's worth the money.

Get it here on


  1. Sounds interesting - the ones not getting 'round to are great for "what if" scenarios too. :)

    1. Indeed. Of those we didn't get round to invading, there are a couple of close calls mentioned...