Cultural victories are the ones that tend to stick. You can bomb people into oblivion, but they often just come back from oblivion fuming about it. Hit them with Shakespeare, though - or with Starbucks - and you've dealt your enemy a blow that's much harder to shake off. If all-out warfare's like going to your neighbour's house, ringing the doorbell and then smacking them about the face with a snow shovel, cultural imperialism is a little sneakier - it's more akin to dropping a load of termites over the back fence under the cover of night. Termites that write the popular hits and star in the popular films as they munch through your rival's territory. Termites that come bearing flat whites and frappucinos.