Example: In Australia, the Aborigines did not fight or resist European colonists, they did not sign treaties and they were not legal subjects. In contrast, in New Zealand, the Maoriís united and violently resisted the colonists.
However, in both cases colonists and Aboriginal or native settlers learned to co-exist. In the process, much was lost and much was gained, as well. The Australian Aborigines chose non-resistance and many were soon assimilated while the Maori's chose resistance, thus, treaties were signed and they were given legal subjecthood. This doesn't mean that the Maori's were not affected by colonialism. They, too, assimilated to a degree. Imperialism may be a form of cultural intersection, with the people in power able to control the masses.
"Imperialism is the fundamental. It is the 'masterís house' while the remaining three ó history, writing and theory ó are the 'masterís tools'." - Linda Tuhiwa Smith
So it seems as if no matter what choice people make (resistance or nonresistance), the idea of progress is that people learn to co-exist. We stand by our own ideas and ideals, teach our own what is important to the survival of our communities and struggle when necessary. From hunter-gatherer, to agriculturalist, to technologist, there seems to be a path that human kind is on that suggests a purpose and that is to live out the rest of our existence on the planet, relying more and more on post-colonial, post-modern tools and thought as a foundation...even as it destroys lives and causes suffering.
If the shoe (so to speak) were on the other foot, I don't see the result being any different. It's cause and effect, someone is in power and someone else suffers. The only real alternative is to start again and I don't see this happening for a while.