It is a nontrivial fact that there are only countably many isomorphism classes of compact Lie groups. One can prove this by a series of reductions: first to the connected case, then to the simply connected case, then by classifying simple Lie algebras. Of course, this proof actually gives a much stronger classification result.
If I only want to prove that there are countably many isomorphism classes of compact Lie groups, can I work without appealing to the classification of simple Lie algebras? I have some ideas involving Tannaka's theorem but I haven't worked out a proof yet.