From Sargon's Akkadians to the British East India Company the business of occupation is a venerable one, including amongst its historical ranks also the Persians, the Romans, the Arabs, the Normans, the Mongols, the Aztecs and the Conquistadors. But how is it done? How does a minority of a population, and often a hated and invasive one, take and hold the reigns of power over all?
Tolstoy wrote in a letter that inspired Gandhi, "What does it mean that thirty thousand men, not athletes but rather weak and ordinary people, have subdued two hundred million vigorous, clever, capable, and freedom-loving people? Do not the figures make it clear that it is not the English who have enslaved the Indians, but the Indians who have enslaved themselves?" The truth captured in this simple calculus is that it was not truly the invading English that captured India, but rather the local legions of ambitious bureaucrats and petty tyrants who saw an alliance with the English, or even outright subordination, as a way to increase their personal power.
When the Spanish came to the New World the pattern was the same. The Incans saw the invaders as game changing allies in their ongoing civil war. The oppressed peoples of the Aztec Empire saw a weapon with which they could at last throw off the parasitic imperial yoke. It's only after the war is over and victory won that the consequences become apparent. One begins to notice that the influx of these new people is unceasing and accelerating. That those now in power are precisely and exclusively those people utterly dependent upon the occupiers for that power, and that the institutions established by these people are slowly becoming more pervasive, more entrenched, and more tyrannical.