The following challenges would create the world's largest empire in history.  However, unlike all previous empires, this one would not be built by conquest but by request.  How that could happen is simple.  As established during the USA's expansion period (when territories were regularly being added as States), the area's government needs only petition the US government for statehood.  And this didn't just happen with US territories but independent sovereign nations, such as the Republic of Texas.

      After petitioning and a treaty is signed between the country and the USA, the country would be annexed by the USA as a US territory.  It would likely then remain a territory for a year or two until elections can be held to elect US House Representatives and US Senators to the US Congress to represent the new state at the federal level.  The one or two years would give citizens in the future state a reasonable amount of time to campaign for those offices.  Immediately and at the same ceremony that officially makes the territory a US state, the newly elected federal politicians would get sworn into office.

      And the "empire" will by its very nature insure world peace.  If "merely" Russia and India were to join the US as states (not to mention more of the following countries), world war would be essentially impossible as the US would simply be too large and powerful for any other nation to even fantasize about taking it on.  The larger the US gets, the smaller the possibility of world war.  And this peace-insuring "empire" could be brought together by...


      All of the following challenges have as their "original" challenge: First weekend mega-concert that calls for their national legislature to petition the United States of America for statehood while allowing their state government (what had been their national government) and local governments to continue to operate as they have been (most being parliamentary governments and thus their governors would be essentially elected in the same way as their prime ministers are currently).  The mega-concert must have at least 30 music bands performing at it and take place in or near one of the country's major cities.  [SPECIAL NOTE: If you are a concert promoter doing one of these rallies, contact us and we'll try to get Jack to your rally.  Please contact us as far in advance as possible so we have a better chance of working your rally into Jack's schedule.  We might even be able to film your rally as part of an upcoming YouTube or TV special.]

      Also, for the following challenges for specific countries (not regions), there are recommendations for relocating presidential-cabinet-level federal departments to them.  This is done to help the new states feel more connected to the US and not ruled by a distant bureaucracy.  That and the relocation will give an immediate (though tiny) boost to their state economies, which can only help relations.  Thus each of the following challenges for specific countries (except for China and Iran) starts off with:

      Additionally, as part of the joining treaty, the Department of...

The following Statehood challenges are long shots.  They are not expected to happen, but they still might.  They are presented here as very optimistic speculations that hopefully become true and will be assuredly fun to debate.  And do not think they are impossible.  When asked which countries were most and least likely to become communist, Karl Marx predicted the democratic USA would become communist and discounted the idea that Czarist Russia ever would.

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