Hahaha, bravo! Bravo! A splendid mixture of military strategy and political subterfuge. I love it! If only there were more options!
Also, I gave up on Hardcore mode of the Galactic Conquest simply because it's too difficult having to keep a suicidal faction alive. It's impossible to protect, say, lions, when they continue attacking you and draining your resources while they themselves are being attacked on all corners and refuse assistance, and you cannot lose planets fast enough to be liked by them. It is impossible to protect deer when you have to many an enemy of everyone else early on so as not to piss them off and have them fight against you later.
There are a lot of 'feedback loop' type alliances in the game, wherein one side will always be friendly with another, such as pigs and vultures for obvious reasons, and when it gets lower and lower and you have foes attacking you from multiple ends, it is impossible to win as you have to waste turns trying to appeal to people and set up alliances without being able to build up your ships and, yet again, having those alliances be broken because the alliance feedback causes them to betray you every time. Even the damn deer don't seem to have an issue with it.
This would be solved by implementing a better system of alliance relations. I.E; if someone is equally liked as another, it shouldn't just be the first guy who attacks that the allied forces supports. If two forces are at war, and are equally liked by a third faction, it would make more sense for the force to assist both sides in the defense of their respective planets and neither in the attack. Likewise, it shouldn't end an alliance when you do not assist in an attack, just when you do not assist in their defense. Finally, trade should not be broken by any condition an alliance is (even the A.I seems to agree, as it is always eager to set up trade a stark few turns after breaking it) other than attacking a planet outright. It would also be neat if there was a type of point scale for loyalty. It doesn't make sense that a planet WOULDN'T like you less if you attacked them head on, but of course all their value systems still remain. Since there is already a scale of how much they like or dislike someone, having more things effect it should be no problem, such as: Attacking Wolves while Deer dislikes them would make Deer like you slightly more, 1+ point, regardless of everything else. Attacking someone Deer likes would make them dislike you, -1 point, regardless of anything else. Being friendly and assisting them with attacks/defense could be +2 points each, while not assisting them could be -1, and appealing to their 'likes', such as Vultures enjoying military strength or Pig's planet ownership would give them a +3, while not appealing to it would give them a -3. Hell, you could even have the score system set up so that liked planets get alliances/trade, neutral planets get trade, and disliked planets get neither; this would greatly add to the political nuance, especially if you wanted to add more subtle/subterfuge-esque actions to defeat someone rather than raw military might.
While this is awfully annoying, it's still such a good game that I'm willing to overlook it.