Been playing for South Africa for a week (real time, not game time!) and I've managed to get fully self sufficient (an easy task for SA, I admit!).
Over time, I made allies with Panama (not the canal), Uraguay, Turkey, Israel, Ecuador, Ireland and Portugal. My big plan was to get 'boots on the ground' in some nice strategical positions, and slowly build them until ready for a huge fight, when I felt ready. Unfortunately, the problem with my big plan is that it's B*LL*CKS.....
First thing, I kinda got behind with my regular trades of goods, petrol etc to a few of my allies (obviously keeping them in good shape keeps them in power), and Panama had a coup, and decided they hate me now. SO, using the troops I already had in place there, decided to give them a DAMN GOOD THRASHING, as I really didn't want to lose that strategical position as I eventually want control of the Panama canal (just to annoy the yanks). That was no real problem, I crushed them rapidly. This in turn annoyed just about every country in the world, save for my few allies dotted around the globe.
Around the time of the conclusion of my little 'scrap' in mid America, Egypt decided to steam-roll my ally Israel. So I decided to take revenge. I made good relations and allied with both Lebenon and Jordan. Got plenty of tanks/boots/artys on the ground there, and decided, seeing as I was already in trouble with the UN over Panama, might as well plough through east and mid Africa, then I'd have those NASTY EGYPTIANS surrounded. Gaddaffi declared war on me during this(!), so I crushed him too (rather fitting for right now!!). This was very easy, but left me with a lot of infrastructure/supply problems to sort out. I decided to wait for new roads/rails/power stations etc I was building through South to North Africa, and for lots more tanks and planes, before pushing into Egypt with a devestating, merciless force. So far, so good...... then the trouble started.
I decided to make friends with India. They are at war with China (although they don't seem to have attacked each other yet after a LONG time!) and I bribed my way in with them with cash and resources. They gave me every treaty bar 'Formal Alliance' (no amount of bribery seems to shift them on that, maybe because the UN hats me. Yes HATS, because HATE is such a strong word...). Then, my ally Turkey got into a fight with Bulgaria and Yugoslavia. I already had troops and tanks/planes there, so I acted on the mutual defense and pretty much fought Turkeys war for them, crushing the Eastern Europeans. As that was calming down, Iran decided to invade Turkey. I shifted my forces from Eastern Europe, and moved accross Turkey to the East, flew/sailed in re-inforcements and eventually, I BATTERED THE LIVING SHID out of those PESKY IRANIANS. Much to my surprise, after we (well, mostly me, the Turks did SOD ALL) finished off Iran, it got split between myself and Turkey (I got the Northern end with Tehran).
At this point, I decided it would be a good idea to take a step back, check my economy/production/supply/researching etc, and just, you know, take it easy for a while and build more facilities, defenses, new units etc, before I finally extract my revenge on Egypt, and start to build some facilities in my newly-accquired Northern Iran. HOWEVER.....
.....this was soon RUINED when my LAZY, USELESS allys and new 'room mate' Turkey decided all this FIGHTING we just had was not enough, and randomly declared war on Afghanistan. "FFS", I thought, another mess to sort out, DAMN YOU Turkey I just want some PEACE AND QUIET for a while! Ok, so I'll quickly CRUSH the Afghans for the Turks. Should be easy.
Easy until, that is, INDIA (who had previously squashed pakistan) decides they rather like Afghanistan, and declared war on Turkey. Now, India has a MASSIVE army. Turkey has not a great deal left. I have a substantial army at home and a fair bit now in the middle east, but not enough to take on India followed by God knows who else. I really don't want war with India (not yet, anyway), and at the same time, I don't want India taking over Turkey, as I don't want a non-formal-ally on my doorstep(s). So far, I've tried to stay out of it, but now the Indians are shifting a lot of hardware towards Turkey.
Should I just stand back and let India flatten the Turks, and then have a friendly (but not formally allied) country close to my territories, or, stand with the Turks and try and hold back India while I make some re-inforcements... OR, as I am edging toward, I think..... STAB THOSE KEBAB-MUNCHING TURKS IN THE BACK, and declare war on THEM, thus possibly stopping them dragging me into more wars I'm not quite ready for, and maybe preventing India from moving in next door?