I was working on some statistics for the countries where we have United Brethren churches. In looking at square mileage–physical size–I noted that the United States is the third largest country in the world, behind Russia and Canada. So we take the bronze, which is just not acceptable for an American. We’re accustomed to being first.
Now, the United States, with 9.83 million square miles, is far behind Russia’s 17.1 million square miles. But we’re only 158,000 square miles smaller than Canada. It seems like we could make that up fairly easily.
Keeping Afghanistan or Iraq would provide more than enough territory, but we don’t want to go that route. I’m pretty sure the Afghans and Iraqis would object.
Tunisia, Surinam, Uruguay, and Cambodia are just about the right size, with a few square miles to spare. But I can’t get excited about any of them.
If we had hung onto the Philippines (300,000 sq.mi), instead of granting independence in 1946, we would now be a firm number two. What was Truman thinking?
We could conquer Cuba (110,860 sq. mi), and that would cut the distance. Then throw in the Dominican Republic (48,700) and grant statehood to Puerto Rico (13,790), and we’d be there. Those acquisitions would also give us a lot of really good baseball players.
Of course, the best solution would be to annex Canada. That would give us a combined area of 19.7 million square miles and vault us straight to the Gold not only in square mileage, but in hockey as well. Of course, Russia would just turn around and take over any number of adjacent countries which were once part of the USSR, and we’d be back to the Silver, with China now taking the Bronze.
I just don’t like being Number 3