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In our age of interconnectedness, one person can ruin the day for billions. A few of them actually do.  If we knew those people, maybe we could stop the destruction and death they cause.
Suppose we saw these folks in the neighborhood, and invited them for drinks or coffee, then found out how we can make them happy without making the rest of us miserable….
Vladimir Putin
Is acquiring territory actually your end-game?  A glance at history would show you that boundaries in Europe are writ on shifting sands.  Today’s conquest is tomorrow’s surrender.  Russia gets great for awhile then shrinks again.  So, since there is no permanent territorial expansion, is there anything else we may serve you, sir?
Xi Jinping
Do you really want Taiwan back at any cost? When China got Hong Kong back,  Hong Kong’s GDP went from 18.4% of mainland China’s in 1997 down to 2.1 % in 2021.  The world honored your deal with England, so no defense dollars were needed.  Now Taiwan’s 23 million people have a GDP at 39th in the world, compared to China’s at 135th. Do you really want to impoverish Taiwan as you impoverished Hong Kong? And you will incur military costs this time,  since no treaty gives you permission.  Show your hardliners the money.  Then they can realize that Taiwan is not a golden ticket; it is a hot potato to avoid if at all possible.
Recep Tayip Erdogan
Sure, it’s good to be the elected king.  The thing is, NATO is helping you way more than any single NATO member, new or proposed, could hurt you.  Your little “terrorist” problem is a cinder compared to the dumpster fire that a European World War would start, and only NATO and the UN have prevented that. Russia is an isolated has-been.  Couldn’t you just spin support of NATO expansion as the most courageous course?
Narendra Modi
Killing for Shiva are we?  WWBD? (What Would Brahma Do?)  Religious intolerance is so last century.  With just a tiny effort you can rouse your people against any demon you choose.  How about climate?  They are all feeling it, so just get them mad as hell against it. And, FYI, you don’t have to make every major trading partner an ally.  Look at us: huge trade with China, big agribusiness sales to Russia, and allies of neither. Do you really want to get sucked into a Taiwan grab or a European War?  Be wary. If you support invasions, your northern border might be next.
Nicolas Maduro
Congratulations, in the last rigged election you won an imploding economy with exploding inflation.  When you die, will your last thought be, “I wish I could have made more lives miserable?”  Let somebody else, like Gaidos, take over the headaches, and go anywhere else you still have friends, to enjoy what’s left of your life with what’s left of your family.
Benjamin Netanyahu
Face it, the Jewish Promised Land was also promised to two other religions and several other ethnic groups.  Does God really want Jews to value any land more than human life?  Whatever happened to “L’chaim”?  For that matter, what ever happened to “Shalom”?  Why not pick another homeland?  One where Jews are not displacing others and are not surrounded by hatred?  For instance, Mexico might sell you Baja California.  Cheap.  Same climate, better neighbors.  Why not check it out?
Donald Trump
Congratulations, you made fact-checking an act of treason and turned “expert” into a bad word.  You pushed Republican small government into every aspect of private life. Then there are the coming indictments. Counting on profuse appeals to keep you out of jail?  What if a judge denies bail pending appeal? As soon as Georgia indicts, why not quietly go someplace that does not extradite  and have your parties there?
Kim Jong Un
Too bad you had to go from sheltered teen to autocrat, with no warning.  In the West, we call that child abuse.  Before 1950, northern Korea was more prosperous and developed than southern Korea.  What if you let the capitalists come in again and just take shares in every IPO?  You can keep the “Beloved,” without the headaches, and you wouldn’t even need the nukes..
Ali Khamenei
If you sat down with a Christian Evangelist,  you could explain to him why he is going to hell.  And then he could explain to you why you are going to hell.  You see the problem? How about this: any good, kind, tolerant person goes to heaven.  What’s that — neither of you could go?  Bummer.
Mohammed Ben Salman
It’s easy to empathize with you: you’re getting in at the tail end of Saudi Arabia’s oil fest.  Party’s over.  It was a strong move putting all the grasping family members under hotel arrest.  Serving up chopped Khashoggi, not so strong.  Keep lifting up the ladies if you want to stay in power: happy wife, happy life.  And why not use some of your incalculable wealth to secure an IMF loan for wind and solar power? Arabia has lots of both.  Eventually, exporting electricity will earn as much as oil, without the side effects.
Changing the minds of just ten people is the easiest way to decrease human and planetary suffering.
Maybe our diplomats could focus on doing that?
Ellie H Bloomfield MD
There is always a way


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